Australian high commissioner to India, Harinder Sidhu, pitched for the civil-nuclear cooperation between the two countries, reiterating her country’s support to India for a seat in the nuclear suppliers group (NSG).
“India is our (Australia’s) ninth largest trading partner and fifth largest export market with a mutual trade of (Australian) $20 billion in 2015,” Sidhu, who joined as the Australian envoy in New Delhi earlier this year, told the media at the Chandigarh Press Club here.
She said her objective was to keep this mutual trade rolling, besides exploring new areas, such as providing logistics support to the elite athletes of India for which a pact had been signed between the two countries.
She acknowledged the reported immigration hassles that some Indian families faced. On stringent immigration laws for the parents of those who migrated on student visa or on work permit, she said the central government there (Australia) could not do in this regard much as such issues were mainly the subject of the respective states.
Sidhu said the Australian police were now accustomed to the Indian culture and religions and were carrying out interactive programmes with the Asian communities on regular basis to counter racial attacks.
“Australia is the most beautiful destination (to work and to live in),” she said in response to another query.
Sidhu earlier called on Punjab agriculture minister Tota Singh, MLA from Moga. She said her ancestors were from Moga, but she was born in Singapore and brought up in Australia after her parents migrated there.