Sydney: Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who is on a four-day visit to Australia, on Sunday received a warm welcome from the Indian diaspora in Sydney, Australia.

"Gratitude to the vibrant Indian community for the love and affection, especially my Odia brothers & sisters for giving me a feeling of home away from home," the Minister tweeted.

Pradhan has embarked on a visit to Australia during which he will hold interactions to broaden engagement between the two countries in areas of learning, skilling, research, innovation and entrepreneurship.

During the visit, Pradhan will co-chair the sixth meeting of the Australia-India Education Council with Australian counterpart Jason Clare. In a statement prior to his departure, Pradhan said that reforms in India's education sector and the renewed vigour in India-Australia relations opens up immense opportunities for both sides to "establish the knowledge economy as a key pillar of our cooperation".

Pradhan, who is also Union Minister for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, expressed confidence that the tour will add momentum to "our unity of purpose, help build trans-national knowledge bridges, further broaden our engagements at all levels in all areas of learning, skilling, research, innovation and entrepreneurship and deepen people-to-people connect".

He will visit Western Sydney University (WSU) the next day to co-chair the sixth meeting of the Australia India Education Council with Jason Clare.

Along with Sarah Mitchell, NSW Minister for Education, Pradhan will visit a school. He will also visit TAFE NSF (leading education provider in Australia) and the University of New South Wales (UNSW) based in Sydney, where he will interact with the Vice-Chancellors and senior representatives of the Australian Government, Department of Education.

On August 23, the Minister will visit Kangan Institute and Deakin University in Melbourne. He will meet academicians and leaders of the Australian education and skilling ecosystem and the vibrant Indian diaspora residing in Melbourne.

Pradhan will also hold a virtual bilateral meeting with Brendan O'Connor MP, Minister for Skills and Training.

The next day, the union minister will hold a dialogue with the Group of Eight (Australia's most research-intensive universities) on building a successful Australia-India research collaboration.

He will also hold a dialogue, organised by Australia India Chamber of Commerce and Monash University. The Minister will also interact with the Indian Students in Melbourne.

An official release said the visit aims to strengthen India-Australia ties and foster cooperation in education and skill development.

The India-Australia bilateral relationship has undergone an evolution in recent years, developing along a positive track, into a strategic partnership. The two nations have much in common, underpinned by shared values, expanding economic engagement and increasing high-level interaction.

The long-standing people-to-people ties, ever-increasing Indian students coming to Australia for higher education, and growing tourism and sporting links have played a significant role in further strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries.