Islamabad: Australia has sought meaningful dialogue with Pakistan to deepen economic ties, it was reported here.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard spoke to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani at a meeting on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), reported Associated Press of Pakistan from the Australian city of Perth.

Australia invited Pakistan for the meaningful dialogue so as to enhance cooperation in agriculture and undertake joint investment ventures to strengthen bilateral relations and as an effective means to counter-terrorism.

Gillard said Australia looks forward to a bilateral visit in 2012 along with delegation comprising businessmen, investors and agriculturists so as to explore new avenues for cooperation between the two countries.

Gilani is the first democratically elected head of government to visit Australia which has emerged as its fifth largest development partner.

The current volume of trade between Pakistan and Australia has gone up to USD 700 million.

Gillard said Australia considers development as an important component of counter-terrorism strategy and would widen the scope of cooperation with Pakistan in all areas.

Gilani also extended an invitation to the Australian Prime Minister to visit Pakistan and said there was a need to find new avenues of cooperation, particularly in areas of agriculture, energy, education, infrastructure and health.

He said the international community needs to extend assistance to Pakistan to enhance its capacity to fight terrorists who are a common enemy.

The Pakistani Prime Minister said suicide bombings had caused flight of capital and scared away investors despite the lucrative incentives offered by the government.

(Agencies)