Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Gordan Grlić Radman on Monday in Canberra met with Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong. The two officials highlighted the excellent relations between Croatia and Australia as well as the importance of the large Croatian Australian community, which numbers 250,000 and constitutes the strongest bridge of cooperation between the two countries.
They agreed that progress had been made in strengthening economic cooperation, welcoming in particular the return of a record number of Australian visitors to Croatia, with around 220,000 arrivals recorded in the first ten months of 2023. Grlić Radman stressed the importance of NATO’s partnership with Australia as one of the key global partners of the Alliance, contributing primarily to the understanding of security issues in the Indo-Pacific.
In the context of EU-Australia relations, the ministers agreed that strong cooperation was crucial for dealing with global challenges and that there was a need to maintain intensive dialogues and cooperation in different areas in order to protect and advance common interests.
Grlić Radman expressed satisfaction with the Australian government’s announcement that it would include Croatia in its programme of tax treaties and start talks on a double taxation avoidance agreement as early as the following year.
The two ministers also discussed current global issues such as the Russian aggression against Ukraine, and the situation in the Middle East and in Southeast Europe. Grlić Radman is the first Croatian foreign minister to visit Australia since 2005.
During his stay in Canberra, Minister Grlić Radman also met with the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, David Hurley. The two officials discussed topical global matters and underlined the friendly bilateral relations between Croatia and Australia.
In addition, Grlić Radman held talks with Industry and Science Minister Ed Husic, Senate President Sue Lines, Senator Simon Birmingham and Senator Marija Kovacic. The minister wrapped up his visit to Canberra by paying tribute at the Australian War Memorial.