PM Modi congratulates Australia's new Prime Minister Anthony Albanese

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday congratulated Australian Labor Party leader Anthony Albanese on his party's electoral victory. He said that he looks forward to further strengthening the overall strategic partnership and working with them on shared priorities in the Indo-Pacific region. Since 2007, Albanese's party has won its first election and he will now be sworn in as prime minister. In fact, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "Congratulations Albanese for the victory of the Australian Labor Party and your election as prime minister! I look forward to further strengthening our overall strategic partnership and working with you on shared priorities in the Indo-Pacific region.''

Both India and Australia are partners in the four-member Quad. This strategic forum also has Japan and the US. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison gave up after the election on Saturday. In fact, the Labor Party has won its first election since 2007. Opposition leader Anthony Albanese will be sworn in as prime minister and amid rising housing prices in Australia, the highest since 2001, the Labor Party has promised more financial aid and better social security. In fact, the party has also expressed its intention to increase the minimum wage. On the foreign policy front, the party has proposed to set up a Pacific Defense School, in which soldiers from neighbouring countries will be trained.

The Labor Party has also expressed its stand on the climate change front with a 43 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. At the same time, the coalition led by Morrison's Liberal Party was expected to get a three-year term for the fourth time. Morrison's coalition has a modest majority in the 151-member House of Representatives. In the initial counting on Saturday, the alliance was leading in 38 seats, the Labor Party in 71 seats.

However, due to the pandemic, nearly half of Australia's 17 million voters have already voted or applied for postal votes, which is likely to slow down the counting. In such a situation, voting is compulsory for adult citizens in the country and 92 per cent of the registered voters had voted in the last election.

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