A Fresh Start for India-Australia Cooperation

The recent visit to India by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard creates an auspicious opportunity for a new beginning in the somewhat not-so-good relations between India and Australia of the past few years. The ban imposed by Australia on sale of uranium to India, along with several unfortunate incidents of deadly attacks on immigrant Indians, mostly students, in the recent past has marked a low point between the two countries. But Gillard's visit has paved the way for a new chapter in bilateral ties, with the decision to conclude a civilian nuclear-energy cooperation agreement a marked departure from the past. It was only in the last year that Gillard's Labour Party overturned the longstanding ban on selling uranium to India even for use in its ongoing peaceful nuclear programme, dedicated to filling energy requirements and medical research. While the actual supply of nuclear fuel will have to await yet to be concluded negotiations on a safeguards agreement, the important...(Read Full Post)