Australian High Commission
New Delhi
India, Bhutan

High Commissioner's remarks at the Bengaluru Tech Summit

                                                                                    High Commissioner's remarks at the Bengaluru Tech Summit

18th November 2019

(Check against Delivery)

It is fantastic to be at the Benglauru Tech Summit. This is a real credit to the government of Karnataka and I wanted to personally acknowledge and congratulate Chief Minister Yediyrurappa and the organising committee on what is set to be another dynamic and agenda-setting edition. More than anything, this Tech Summit underscores the central role of Bengaluru and Karnataka in India’s and the world’s technology ecosystems.

Why, might you ask, is Australia here today?

The 2018 India Economic Strategy prepared for the Australian Government, identified ten priority states and ten priority sectors for Australia to transform its investment and trade relationship with India.

Of these, science and technology was a priority sector and Karnataka was a priority state. We identified it was vital Australia built partnerships with companies and organisations in Karnataka, especially in Bengaluru - the fourth largest and second fastest growing technology cluster in the world.

The India Economic Strategy identified overlaps between Karnataka’s strengths and what Australia can bring in nanotechnology, ICT, healthcare, start ups, niche agricultural technology, water management and urban infrastructure.

This is not just empty task. Reflecting the importance we place on our science and technology links, Australia’s largest bilateral science fund is the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund.  And there is tremendous scope to strengthen the links among our universities, research institutions, businesses and ultimately end users for new technology and scientific solutions to meet our future challenges and to seize on new opportunities.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison will be visiting India in January. His visit, will among other things, focus on driving greater collaboration between India and Australia in science, innovation and critical technology. This makes sense because, at its heart, the Australia-India technology partnership is underpinned by our shared view that emerging and critical technologies will shape the security and prosperity of our citizens. As we both examine the coming challenges and opportunities from disruptive technologies we should work together. We want to see a global technology market place that is open and resilient.  And we want to ensure our democratic values and citizen-centered approach to technology standards and ethics remains core to next generation technological advances.

Harnessing the potential but also protecting our citizens when it comes to artificial Intelligence, machine learning, 5G and 6G and quantum computing will be priorities for both Australia and India. And there are a number of reasons why it makes sense for Australian and Indian thought leaders to collaborate in these fields so that the norms, rules and standards that shape the global technology eco-system reflect our shared values.

Australia sees India – and many of the thought leaders in this room – as being at the forefront of the global technology landscape. With a large, growing, tech savvy and increasingly connected population, India will be a wellspring of big data and new innovation. 

And Australia as an open and globally integrated economy with world class research institutions is well placed to play a role in driving outcomes that can support prosperity in both countries.

I thank you for the opportunity to speak today.