Ahead of his upcoming visit to India next week, US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter said America was looking for ways to complement India’s Act East policy and cooperate in important areas of the Asia Pacific region.
Dr Carter will sign the 2015 US-India Defence Framework, which will further enhance the two countries’ defence cooperation across various areas- from maritime security to aircraft carrier and jet engine technology. He will also visit the Eastern Naval Command at Vizag in Andhra Pradesh.
During his stay in India, he is scheduled to meet India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar in New Delhi and sign the new US-India Defence Framework, which will guide military cooperation for the next decade. The two countries had previously signed a ten-year framework agreement in 2005.
Currently, the US is looking to strengthen its maritime security with several South Asian countries. With Japan and Australia, the US is expanding trilateral exercise and exploring defence technology cooperation. With Japan and Korea, the country is developing a first-of-a-kind information sharing system. With Japan and India, the United States is sharing lessons of disaster management and building greater maritime cooperation.
America is closely working with other Asian countries including Republic of Korea, Thailand, and the Philippines to ensure peace and stability in the region.
Referring to China’s growing dominance in the South China Sea, Dr Carter said that the US wanted a shared global architecture which would enable all the South Asian countries to grow together.