Morrison added that the agreement signed at the virtual summit would play an important role in strengthening bilateral relations. “This is a formidable portfolio of specific and very specific agreements that give shape and substance to the global and strategic partnership,” he said. Other important agreements signed by the two sides at the bilateral virtual summit – the first for Modi – included a framework agreement on cooperation in the field of critical technology in the field of cybersecurity and cyber-implementation, a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the extraction and processing of critical and strategic minerals, and an agreement to implement cooperation in research and technology defences. At the unprecedented bilateral virtual summit between India and Australia, nine important documents were announced or signed at the June 4 summit, which was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. This is Prime Minister Modi`s first virtual bilateral summit. The virtual summit was held after Morrison had to cancel twice a planned visit to India – first in January because of the bushfires in Australia, then in May because of the Covid 19 crisis. The agreement is likely to be signed at a virtual bilateral summit between Modi and Morrison, scheduled for June 4, sources told ThePrint. One of the most important developments since the end of the summit has been the publication of the Joint Declaration on a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP) between the Republic of India and Australia. A key aspect of most agreements and cooperation between the two states is that they make extensive use of the current COVID 19 pandemic and the global crisis that followed, which it triggered as the initiator. Therefore, even if one looks at the agreement on a larger PSC between the two states, it cannot be ignored that both parties are deeply committed to the effectiveness of COVID 19.
Another factor to consider with respect to the PSC is how their assessment of the nature of the Indo-Pacific region was subtly associated with the understanding of the two nations about COVID-19. In the statement, the two states said it was important to “react in a coordinated manner to COVID-19 and build a prosperous, open and stable world according to COVID-19.” This sounds like their vision of an open, free, rules-based Indopapamian region… which promotes prosperous, stable and sovereign states on the basis of common interests. Before the summit, experts and analysts expected urgent developments in bilateral relations between the two nations. The main one was the need for India and Australia to sign a Mutual Logistics Support Agreement (MLSA) for more defence and strategic interoperability. The two nations were also expected to discuss improving cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. Naval exercises such as AUSINDEX and MALABAR marked important turning points in their strategic relationship. While discussions have been ongoing since 2019 on Australia`s accession as a permanent member of MALABAR, the last edition of AUSINDEX in 2019 has been confirmed as a great success. The inclusion of four front-line vessels equipped with full helicopters, a submarine and a large number of aircraft, including the long-range P8I and P8A anti-submarine combat aircraft, symbolized the intentions of enhanced defence cooperation between two states. Related| “Our ties are deep with common values”: PM Modi at a virtual summit with the Australian Prime Minister The summit is being held at a time when India and Australia have joined together to conduct an international investigation into the origins of coronavirus. The two sides also presented a “common vision of maritime cooperation in the Indo-Pacific” and signed seven agreements that focused on crucial areas such as defence and rare metal minerals.