Centre for Australia-India Relations launched in Parramatta

Recognizing the valuable expertise within Indian-Australian communities, the Centre has revealed Tim Thomas as the CEO

Center for Australia-India Relations set to boost cultural and academic ties / Image - representative Image

The Australian Government, led by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, launched the new centre for Australia-India relations, headquartered in Parramatta. The Centre, which was announced in 2023, aims to enhance cooperation and exchange, guided by a Strategic Plan shaped by extensive consultations with stakeholders from both nations. 

Supported by both the national and New South Wales government, the centre will serve  as a hub for government, business, academia, the cultural sector, and Indian-Australian communities to foster new partnership opportunities, an official statement noted.

It will boost business engagement, coordinate bilateral economic activities, form university-private-government groups to explore Indian opportunities, engage with executives through roundtables, showcase successful market entries, promote economic agreements, and connect Maitri Scholars and Research Grants awardees with industry networks, a governement release noted.

Tim Thomas was named as the CEO of the centre along with a group of committed leaders, which comprises Indian-Australian corporate leaders who will work to build a deeper understanding of India among their peers in the Australian business community.

"The Centre for Australia-India Relations is excited to establish its headquarters in Parramatta, a thriving innovation ecosystem and an important focal point for the vibrant Indian-Australian community. The Centre has built strong momentum through our Maitri grants and stakeholder impact programs. The Centre will continue to galvanise Australian stakeholders to move on the tremendous opportunities that India's growth presents,” the CEO remarked. 

Speaking on the occasion, the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Penny Wong, said, "Working more closely with our Indian-Australian communities – our fastest growing diaspora – means we can better respond to a diverse and evolving India. The Centre's CEO and Director Network will assist Australian business leaders to engage with India's growth story," 

The centre's flagship inaugural Maitri Scholars and Fellowships programs’ recipients were announced. Among the recipients are five Maitri Scholars from India, who will undertake PhDs focusing on STEM research topics such as advanced manufacturing and clean energy solutions. Additionally, seven Maitri Fellows will engage in research projects that delve into the shared geostrategic and economic futures of Australia and India, covering areas like maritime security, climate change response, secure supply chains, and regional cooperation.

With India set to become the world's third-largest economy by decade's end, the Australian Government aims to capitalize on this growth. Consultations will begin on a new Australia-India economic roadmap, building on the 2018 India Economic Strategy. Concurrently, FTA negotiations focus on enhancing market access in agriculture and manufacturing.

These comprehensive initiatives underscore the commitment of the Albanese Government to fortify the relationship between Australia and India, ensuring mutual growth and prosperity for both nations.