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Declaration by the Prime Minister of Australia and the Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq.



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Prime Minister of Australia

Media Release

Declaration by the Prime Minister of Australia and the Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq

13 March 2009

The Prime Minister and the Prime Minister of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki met on 12 March 2009. They agreed that the first visit to Australia by a Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq symbolised the strength of the bilateral relationship and opened a new era of cooperation. Both underlined the genuine friendship between the two countries.

The Prime Ministers committed to further strengthening the bilateral relationship, including by broadening cooperation across a wide spectrum of shared interests and through intensifying trade and investment links.

They agreed an integrated framework to deliver a new era of bilateral cooperation focused on key areas of complementarity between the two countries. This will be based on six pillars: agriculture; resources and energy; trade cooperation; education, training and research; public health; security and border control.

To take forward this framework, the Prime Ministers agreed to the conclusion of six Memoranda of Understanding to be completed by no later than June 2009:

1. A Memorandum of Understanding on Agriculture, including a focus on:

{ Strengthening Iraqi capabilities; for example, through training, research and development, technology cooperation and administrative support { Strengthening commercial links related to agriculture.

2. A Memorandum of Understanding on Resources and Energy, including a focus on:

{ Iraq-Australia collaboration on the development of Iraq’s oil and gas industry, including human resources { Australian investment in Iraq’s resources and energy sectors

3. A Memorandum of Understanding on Trade Cooperation, including a focus on:

{ Strengthening bilateral trade and investment { Capacity building for Iraq in international trade

4. A Memorandum of Understanding on Education, Training and Research, including a focus on:

{ Collaboration between institutions { Scholarships in areas of mutual interest

5. A Memorandum of Understanding on Public Health, including a focus on:

{ The continued development of Iraq’s health system; for example, medical professionals, medical research and support for primary health care { Use of Australian expertise to provide public health infrastructure

6. A Memorandum of Understanding on Security and Border Control, including a focus on:

{ Strengthening border surveillance and monitoring capabilities { Support for Iraq’s Ministry of Interior; for example, capacity building in forensics and DNA technology and strengthening police capabilities.

The Prime Ministers agreed to a mechanism for overseeing the implementation of these agreements. This will involve establishment annual talks by senior officials who will report to respective Ministers, with respective Foreign Ministers to review progress annually.

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