Prime Minister Narendra Modi received the US Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter on the evening of April 12 and expressed satisfaction at the progress in bilateral defence cooperation between the two countries.
Modi expressed hope that discussions with the framework of the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative between the two countries would progress along his vision of ‘Make in India’ in the defence sector.
Secretary Carter conveyed that the US viewed India a close strategic ally and an enduring partner and that both sides were moving from the buyer-seller relationship towards a manufacturing partnership.
Both of them also exchanged views on the regional situation, including in the South Asia and the Asia Pacific region. Secretary Carter conveyed that the US policy of ‘Rebalance’ and India’s “Act East’ policy complimented each other.
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Announced their in principle agreement to conclude a Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) and to continue working toward other facilitating agreements to enhance military cooperation and technology transfer.
Encourage greater participation of U.S. Defence Industries in the Make In India program, both sides agreed to encourage their respective defence industries to develop new partnerships in the pursuit of a range of cutting-edge projects.
In support of Make in India, the United States shared two proposals to bolster India’s suite of fighter aircraft for consideration of the Government of India.
Reviewed the progress since the signing of the new Framework for the U.S.-India Defense Framework Relationship last June to deepen bilateral defence ties.
Discussed the priorities for the coming year in defence ties
Discussed specific steps that the two sides will take to pursue priorities in the next one year
Priorities include expanding collaboration under DTTI, Make in India efforts of Government of India, new opportunities to deepen cooperation in maritime security and Maritime Domain Awareness; military-to-military relations; the knowledge partnership in the field of defence; and regional and international security matters of mutual interest.
Both sides expressed desire to explore agreements which would facilitate further expansion of bilateral defence cooperation in practical ways.
Noted the understanding reached to conclude an information exchange annex (IEA) to enhance data and information sharing specific to aircraft carriers.
Agreed to strengthen cooperation in the area of maritime security.
To expeditiously conclude a “white shipping” technical arrangement to improve data sharing on commercial shipping traffic.
Agreed to commence Navy-to-Navy discussions on submarine safety and anti-submarine warfare.
Agreed to launch a bilateral Maritime Security Dialogue, co-chaired by officials at the Joint Secretary/Assistant Secretary-level of the Indian Ministries of Defence and External Affairs and the U.S. Departments of Defense and State.
Both sides reaffirmed the importance of safeguarding maritime security and ensuring freedom of navigation and over flight throughout the region, including in the South China Sea.
Vowed their support for a rules-based order and regional security architecture conducive to peace and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean
Emphasized their commitment to working together and with other nations to ensure the security and stability that have been beneficial to the Asia-Pacific for decades.
Reviewed the progress and reiterated their commitment to pursue co-development and co-production of advanced defence articles under the DTTI.
Agreed to initiate two new DTTI pathfinder projects on Digital Helmet Mounted Displays and the Joint Biological Tactical Detection System.
· Commended the on-going discussions at the Jet Engine Technology Joint Working Group (JETJWG) and the Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Cooperation (JWGACTC).
Agreed to work towards greater cooperation in the field of cutting-edge defence technologies, including deepening consultations on aircraft carrier design and operations, and jet engine technology.
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