He arrived in Melbourne after a hectic morning in Canberra, where he held bilateral talks with his Australian counterpart Tony Abbott and then addressed the Australian Parliament, the first Indian Prime Minister to do so.

Abbott will host a reception for his Indian counterpart at the iconic 161-year-old Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) later in the evening.

Modi will leave for Fiji in the night for a day-long visit to conclude his 10-day three-nation tour.

India, Australia agree on early closure of civil n-agreement

India and Australia agreed on seeking an early closure on the civil nuclear agreement and also to speed up negotiations on a bilateral trade agreement as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held talks with his Australian counterpart Tony Abbott.

Modi, addressing the media here after talks with Abbott, said he has asked for easier access for Indian business to the Australian market and quicker investment approvals.

He also welcomed the New Framework for Security Cooperation and said "security and defence are important and growing areas of the new India-Australia partnership for advancing regional peace and stability, and combating terrorism and trans-national crimes".

He said both sides have agreed on reconstituting the CEO Forum and to speed up negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.

Modi said India will hold a 'Make in India' show in Australia in 2015, while Australia will hold a Business week in India in January 2015.

"We also agreed on seeking early closure on the civil nuclear agreement, which will give Australia a chance to participate in one of the most secure and safe nuclear energy programme in the world," he said. "The economic climate in India has changed. I believe it will be a lot easier to convert opportunities into concrete outcomes," he added.

Modi said there is need for more people-to-people connect between the two countries."Cricket and hockey are natural glue between our people. I know yoga is enormously popular here. We need to connect our people more.

"He said he was happy with the new Cultural Exchange Programme inked on Tuesday and India would establish a Cultural Centre in Sydney by February 2015. "We plan to hold a Festival of India in Australia in 2015 and tourism weeks in Australia," he added.

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