India’s Defence Secretary Giridhar Aramane, US Under Secretary of Defence for Policy Colin Kahl on Wednesday reviewed the progress made in furthering India-US defence industrial cooperation and operationalising the India-US Major Defence Partnership. The two on Wednesday co-chaired the 17th meeting of the India-US Defence Policy Group (DPG) in Washington, DC

Important aspects such as military-to-military cooperation, implementation of foundational defence agreements, exercises and the ongoing and future cooperative activities in the Indian Ocean Region were discussed during the meeting, according to a release issued by the Ministry of Defence. During the meeting, considerable focus was given to ways and means to enhance defence-industrial cooperation, including technology partnership, long-term research and development and improving supply chain security.

The meeting also discussed promoting co-development and co-production in India including potential areas and projects where Indian and US defence companies could work together. They agreed to encourage both the private and government stakeholders to utilise the innovation ecosystems and promote defence start-ups. The DPG is the apex official-level mechanism between the Ministry of Defence, India and US Department of Defence. It comprehensively reviews and guides all aspects of bilateral defence cooperation, focusing on policy.

Meanwhile, Vedant Patel, Principal Deputy Spokesperson for the US Department of State, recently highlighted the deepening partnership between Washington and New Delhi ahead of the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “Our partnership with India is one of our most consequential relations and we were close with India on a number of vital priorities. The state visit is an opportunity to deepen some of these partnerships,” said Vedant Patel on the question of PM Modi’s Official State Visit to the United States on June 22, 2023.

He said that State Department and Secretary Antony Blinken are critically involved in the upcoming state visit for PM Modi. Speaking about India’s role in ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific, Patel said, “The state visit is an opportunity to deepen some of these partnerships, whether it has been ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific and ensuring that it is a region that is more connected, more prosperous, more secure and more resilient. Obviously, between India and the United States, there exists an opportunity to deepen trade issues, deepen security partnerships.”