The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, welcomed India’s Minister of External Affairs, Dr. S. Jaishankar, to Melbourne for the Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue and the inaugural India-Australia Foreign Ministers’ Cyber Framework Dialogue on 12 February 2022.
Both Ministers welcomed the elevation of the bilateral cyber cooperation through the Australia-India Framework Arrangement on Cyber and Cyber-Enabled Critical Technology Cooperation under the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, agreed in June 2020, and appreciated the progress made with the Fourth Australia-India Bilateral Cyber Policy Dialogue, held in July 2021, and the inaugural Joint Working Group on Cyber Security Cooperation, held in June 2021, as well as exchange of views between Secretaries responsible for telecommunications from both countries. They welcomed the scheduling of the inaugural Joint Working Group on Information Communication Technologies in March 2022.
The Ministers recognised cooperation in the areas of cyber governance, cyber security, capacity building, innovation, digital economy, and cyber and critical technologies as an essential pillar of the India-Australia relationship. In this respect, the Centre of Excellence for Critical and Emerging Technology Policy, to be located in Bengaluru India, demonstrates both countries’ long-term commitment to bilateral cooperation in cyber and critical technologies. Minister Jaishankar welcomed the Australian Government’s intention to open a Consulate-General in Bengaluru.
The Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to an open, secure, free, accessible, stable, peaceful, and interoperable cyberspace and technologies that adhere to international law. The Ministers emphasised the way in which technology is designed, developed, governed and used should be informed by our shared democratic values and respect for human rights. They condemned attempts to use cyberspace and cyber-enabled technologies to undermine international peace and stability and committed to working cooperatively to strengthen mutual cooperation in various multilateral fora, including the United Nations, in developing international standards, norms and frameworks for cyberspace and critical and emerging technologies, including through the International Telecommunications Union; the Ad Hoc Committee to Elaborate a Comprehensive International Convention on Countering the Use of Information and Communications Technologies for Criminal Purposes; and consistent with the UN Group of Governmental Experts on Advancing responsible State behaviour in cyberspace in the context of international security; and the UN Open-Ended Working Group on developments in the field of Information Telecommunications in the context of international security. Both Ministers reiterated the importance of diversity, gender equality and women’s empowerment in the design, development and use of cyberspace and technologies.
The Ministers reiterated their commitment to secure, resilient and trusted technology and agreed to work together to address the significant threat of malicious cyber activity by state and non-state actors. They acknowledged the importance of the security and resilience of telecommunications networks and the need to work closely with each other to protect next generation telecommunications networks, including 5G and 6G.
The Ministers emphasised the integral role of cyber and cyber-enabled critical technologies in fostering sustainable development and inclusive economic growth. They recognised the importance of diverse and trusted technology supply chains including trusted sources and products.
Recognising the importance of working collaboratively with international partners, the Ministers agreed to undertake joint engagement with Indo-Pacific partners to collaboratively improve the region’s cyber capabilities to promote a resilient and trusted cyberspace and effective incident response.
Both Ministers looked forward to holding the next India-Australia Foreign Ministers’ Cyber Framework Dialogue in 2023.
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