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Education, tourism and jobs on the agenda as Premier Daniel Andrews heads to India today

Premier Daniel Andrews on the eve of his first official visit to India, announcing Victoria's India strategy Source: Office of the Premier

Victoria's Premier Daniel Andrews is on his way to India for his first official trip. Among other things, he will attend the Raisina Dialogue 2018 and visit New Delhi's famed Gurudwara Bangla Sahib.

The Premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews spoke about his 'India strategy' yesterday in Melbourne, before flying out today to New Delhi. He will remain in India until Saturday, 20 January 2018, and will also visit the city of Bengaluru.

Whilst in New Delhi, he will launch 'Victoria’s India Strategy: Our Shared Future', which sets a blueprint for doubling the value of Victoria’s trade ties with India to almost $1 billion over the next decade.

He will also attend the Raisina Dialogue 2018 hosted by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, where the theme this year is “Managing Disruptive Transitions: Ideas, Institutions and Idioms”; and during his trip to New Delhi, Premier Andrews will also visit the revered Bangla Sahib gurudwara.

With more than 209,000 Victorians of Indian ancestry, Victoria boasts the highest Indian population in Australia. Speaking about the India strategy on the eve of his first official visit to India, Mr Andrews said, “Victoria is proudly home to more Indian people than any other Australian state, and I’m honoured to pay homage to their home country and their culture.”

India is Victoria’s fifth most lucrative offshore tourist market. In the 12 months ending September 2017, more than 135,000 people from India visited Victoria, staying a combined five million nights and spending $373 million at Victorian businesses.

Mr Andrews said, “Every year Victoria welcomes more students, more visitors and more businesses from India, but our relationship is about more than just numbers. It’s about strong friendships and shared contributions.”

There are more than 38,500 students from India enrolled at Victoria’s universities and leading education providers. In total, the international education sector contributes more than $5 billion to the state’s economy and provides jobs for 30,000 Victorians.

“India makes an enormous contribution to Victoria. Demonstrating our strengths and opportunities to the people of India is great for our economy and great for jobs,” said Mr Andrews.

Among other things, the Premier is also expected to push for the extradition of fugitive Puneet Puneet to Melbourne, to face prosecution for a drunken hit and run case dating back to 2008.

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