New Delhi: President Pranab Mukherjee on Friday expressed happiness over bilateral agreement being signed between India and Australia on co-operation in civil nuclear energy and said it will open "a new chapter" in strengthening of relations between the two countries.
Mukherjee told this to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott who called on him this evening at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
"The President expressed his happiness over the bilateral agreement on co-operation in civil nuclear energy which will be signed during this visit and said this will open a new chapter," the President's Press Secretary Venu Rajamony said in a statement.
The President said India sees Australia as an important supplier of energy resources and a partner in ensuring its energy security.
He invited Australian companies to invest in Indian infrastructure.
The President also called for greater cooperation in counter-terrorism and thanked Australia for its support of India?s candidature for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council.
Welcoming Abbott, the President said India attached importance to its relations with Australia and wanted to move forward in bilateral engagements.
"The two countries can work together for common benefit in the Asian era," Mukherjee said and added that frequent exchanges at multiple levels have helped the two countries have a greater understanding of each other?s policy and positions.
The Australian Prime Minister assured the President that he was determined to do whatever is required to strengthen an already deep friendship.
Describing India as an emerging democratic superpower, the Australian Prime Minister said Australia recognizes India?s increasing importance in the world.
"He (Abbott) would do his best to encourage the people of Australia see the potential for an even deeper friendship with India," the statement said.