Visit paves way for deeper trade ties

Department of Agriculture and Water Resources

A delegation from the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare visited Australia in early November for an annual bilateral meeting with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and a tour of agriculture and biosecurity systems.

Acting Deputy Secretary of the department’s Biosecurity and Compliance Group, Peter Timson, said the trip was a chance to strengthen ties between the two countries.

“The purpose of this trip was for our countries to work together to support each other’s trade and market access, while minimising any biosecurity risks,” Mr Timson said.

“Our colleagues from India, led by Dr Pramod Meherda, Joint Secretary Plant Protection, visited cropping regions in South Australia and avocado farms in Victoria.

“The delegation also toured Melbourne’s Post-Entry Quarantine Facility, the Steritech irradiation facility, and inspected the department’s new three-dimensional x-ray machines.

“We’ve also held bilateral plant trade discussions, and the delegation heard from industry and research development bodies who are working to improve cross-border initiatives.”

Acting Deputy Secretary of the department’s Agricultural Trade Group, Nicola Hinder PSM, said Australia and India enjoyed a close, longstanding, and complementary economic relationship.

“With the Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement currently making its way through Australia’s parliament for ratification, and negotiations for a full free trade agreement commencing next year, two-way agricultural trade is set to rise,” Ms Hinder said.

“This visit builds upon the strong foundations of Australia-India bilateral relations and will assist with delivering new trade and market access opportunities for both countries.”

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