India and Australia elevated their ties to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in 2020

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison will hold the second India-Australia Virtual Summit on March 21, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) announced on Thursday.

The two Prime Ministers had held their historic first Virtual Summit on June 4, 2020 when the India-Australia relationship was elevated to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

During the upcoming virtual summit, the Leaders will take stock of progress made on various initiatives under the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, the MEA said in a press release.

"The virtual summit will lay the way forward on new initiatives and enhanced cooperation in a diverse range of sectors between India and Australia. The Leaders are expected to commit to closer cooperation in trade, critical minerals, migration and mobility, and education, among others," the MEA noted.

The two leaders are also expected to exchange views on regional and international issues of mutual interest.

According to the MEA, the Summit highlights the importance attached by both countries to their bilateral relations as also their close cooperation on regional and global issues.

The India-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership has maintained the momentum of an upward trajectory with both countries continuing to collaborate closely, despite the Covid-19 pandemic, in wide-ranging areas including science and technology, defence, cyber, critical and strategic materials, water resource management, as well as public administration and governance.

Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Morrison met in Washington DC for the first in-person meeting after the Covid-19 pandemic in September 2021 on the margins of the Quad Leaders’ Summit.

They jointly launched the Infrastructure for Resilient Island States (IRIS) in Glasgow on the margins of the COP26 in November 2021.