India, US sign new defence framework pact, focus on co-development

In a major thrust to the India-US Strategic Partnership, the two nations signed a new 10-year defense framework agreement during an official visit of the US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to India. The agreement builds upon the previous framework and shall guide the bilateral defense and strategic partnership for the next ten years.

The groundwork for this was done during the successful January visit of President Barack Obama to India. The agreements were signed during the meeting of Mr Carter and India’s Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar on June 3rd in New Delhi.

The 2015 Framework for the India-US Defense Relationship provides avenues for high level strategic discussions in strengthening of defense capabilities. It recognizes the transformative nature of the Defense Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI) between the US and India, provides for exchanging armed forces, and opportunities for co-development and co-production of defense equipment, to give a push to PM led Make in India initiative. Two agreements for projects on joint development of Mobile Electric Hybrid Power Sources and the Next Generation Protective Ensembles were also finalized.

During Mr Carter’s visit, apart from inking the framework agreement, the two sides have agreed to expedite discussions to take forward cooperation on jet engines, aircraft carrier design and construction, and other areas. Continued bilateral cooperation in the areas of mutual interest, including maritime security and joint training in defense, was also agreed to.

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