Bengaluru– Australia’s northeast Queensland state has unveiled its India trade and investment strategy to spur the economy, a Minister said on Thursday.

“The Palaszczuk government’s first Queensland-India trade and investment strategy is set to deliver a $1.5-billion trade boost to our state economy,” Queensland Minister for Innovation Kate Jones said in a statement here.

Jones, the ruling Labour Party’s Member of Parliament, also holds the portfolios of Tourism Industry and Commonwealth Games in the state.

Outlining the five-year (2018-23) strategy, Jones said as India was Queensland’s third largest merchandise export market, innovation was key to strengthen the bilateral trade and investment relations with India.

“It’s crucial to tailor our strategy to build the market,” Jones said, adding her state had advantages to be an ideal trade and investment partner for India.

According to the latest data, Queensland has potential to increase exports to India by 15 per cent over the next five years, which translates into $1.5 billion benefit to the local economy.

“This strategy identifies five key initiatives that will benefit both Queensland and India into the future,” Jones said.

The initiatives will enhance the profile of the Queensland-India relationship, build business capacity, develop market intelligence, foster relationships between businesses and facilitate collaborative projects in both states.

In 2017, Queensland sold goods valued at $9.4 billion to India, a 34 per cent jump over 2016 and represented 60 per cent of Australia’s exports to India.

India is also Queensland’s second-largest source of international students with 11,700 student enrolments in 2017.

Jones, who is on a trade mission to India, attended the inaugural of the three-day Bengaluru Technology Summit, being held in the Palace grounds.

She also participated in the 7th edition of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)-Yi Entrepreneurship Summit here on Wednesday night. (IANS)