While there are good people-to-people contacts between India and Australia, there is more that can be done to promote relations. As India grows in its influence, there scope for more meaningful cooperation such as through the Quad and trade.
While many developed nations face the problems of an ageing population, India boasts a vibrant and youthful demographic. Its large youth population, along with extraordinary economic advancements such as the 160 million people lifted out of extreme poverty between 2004 and 2012, provide hope for a broader prosperity as this fiercely independent nation seeks to take a prominent place on the world stage.
Flavia Bellieni Zimmerman of the AIIA for WA spoke with Professor Anu Rommohan ahead of an AIIA for WA panel discussion on ‘India: Challenges and Opportunities’ on 27 March. They discussed the possibility of more meaningful cooperation between Australia and India and how India will capitalise on the opportunities ahead while striving to overcome the considerable obstacles it faces, as environmental issues, skills shortages and public health challenges threaten to slow its progress.
Professor Anu Rammohan is a professor at the University of Western Australia. Her research focus has been on understanding household-level socio-economic factors that can influence maternal and child health outcomes, gender and food security issues in South and South East Asia, particularly in India, Indonesia and more recently in Myanmar.
Interview by Flavia Bellieni Zimmermann.
Video and Photography by Nancye Miles-Tweedie.