The Union Education Minister of India recently met with his Australian counterpart, Jason Clare, in a significant bilateral meeting. Both governments reached a consensus to enhance research collaborations, with a particular focus on key sectors such as mines, minerals, agriculture, water management, renewable energy, logistics, artificial intelligence, and healthcare. The discussions, held during the inaugural Australia-India Education and Skill Council Meeting in Gujarat’s capital, Gandhinagar, highlighted the importance of exchange programmes, dual degrees, twin degrees, and joint Ph.D. initiatives between the two nations.
According to Minister Pradhan, the meeting was highly productive, emphasising the critical role of educational skills as a primary focus. The collaborative research agreement between India and Australia strengthens the economies of both nations. It also aligns with the global requirements outlined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the G20 summit. Minister Pradhan further emphasised that the consortium agreement marks just the beginning of a promising collaboration, indicating the potential for further initiatives.
The Australia-India Education and Skills Council (AIESC), formerly known as the Australia-India Education Council (AIEC), serves as a pivotal platform for academic collaboration, steering bilateral priorities in education, training, and research. Established in 2011, this forum has played a crucial role in fostering partnerships between the two countries. Notably, six Australian universities have formed a consortium focused on education and skill development. Australia is a preferred destination for over 100,000 Indian students, and the bilateral ties between the nations have led to more than 400 partnerships. The AIEC has conducted six meetings so far, with working groups comprising leading members from both countries. The core areas of focus include higher education, research, student mobility, qualification recognition, and quality assurance, reflecting the commitment of both nations to advancing educational cooperation.