Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet with his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese today. Modi’s impromptu trip to Australia follows
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet with his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese today.
Modi’s impromptu trip to Australia follows the cancellation of President Joe Biden’s attendance to the Quad summit, set to be held in Sydney. Biden n pulled out of the meeting to focus on domestic issues. This visit is Modi’s first since 2014, and marks an important tightening of relations between the two countries.
Expect discussions between Modi and Albanese to center around expanded defense cooperation. Amid worsening relations with China, both countries are interested in in expanding cooperation. Specifically, Canberra and New Delhi both have a strong interest in maintaining free and open international shipping in the South China Sea, an issue which has been central to tensions between China and its regional competitors. Given Modi’s interest in expanding defense cooperation and their current ties through the Quad group, it is possible the two nations will agree to hold joint military exercises. That being said, it is unlikely that Albanese’s government will agree to increase joint exercises if Modi’s government continues to pledge neutrality regarding the war in Ukraine.