Recently a meeting of the Defense and Foreign Secretaries of India and Australia was held in New Delhi, due to which both countries have come closer to implementing the Logistics Support Agreement (LSA).
- Further talks on this agreement will take place during the Australian Prime Minister’s forthcoming visit to India (13–16 January). He will travel to Mumbai, New Delhi and Bangalore city as part of this tour.
- The first such ‘two plus two’ talks between India and Australia were held in 2017.
- During this meeting, the two countries comprehensively reviewed their strategic cooperation and regional security scenario.
‘Logistics Support Agreement’
- The agreement will allow the armies of the two countries to use each other’s military logistics, under which soldiers from both countries will be able to exchange facilities such as food, water and petroleum.
- This agreement will be very important for both countries in view of China’s military expansion and economic impact.
India-Australia Defense Relations
- India and Australia have a common concern with China in the defense sector. While Australia is concerned about China’s presence in the Pacific region, India is concerned with China’s growing activities in the Indian Ocean.
- In early 2019, the Australian and Indian navies participated in the two-week bilateral maritime exercise AUSINDEX.
- This bilateral maritime exercise was organized to increase mutual cooperation and reciprocity between the Indian Navy and the Royal Australian Navy and to provide an opportunity for the employees to exchange their professional views among themselves. .
- Till the year 2016-18, armies of both countries conducted joint exercises ‘AUSTRA-HIND’.
- It is significant that in the 2017 Australian Foreign Policy White Paper, India was identified as the frontline international partners with the US, Japan, Indonesia, China.
- The ‘Quad’ (QUAD) was conceptualized in 2007 by Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe to counterbalance China.
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