U.S Calls India A Major Defense Partner

According to latest reports from PTI The United States of America has recognised India as a “major defence partner” which means India will now access to defence-related trade and technology transfer. In a joint statement issued which was released after Prime Minister Narendra Modi held talks with President Obama, the statement read “Noting that the U.S.-India defence relationship can be an anchor of stability and given the increasingly strengthened cooperation in defence, the United States hereby recognises India as a Major Defence Partner.” Under this agreement U.S. will facilitate technology sharing with India to a level which it habitually only shares with NATO, Japan, South Korea and Israel which are considered its closest allies and partners.

The joint statement said, “The leaders reached an understanding under which India would receive license-free access to a wide range of dual-use technologies in conjunction with steps that India has committed to take to advance its export control objectives.” White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters that the meeting between Mr. Obama and Mr. Modi resulted in progress on finalising some key defence agreements between India and the U.S. He said “I can tell you that there was important progress on finalising agreements relating to defence logistics, sharing of maritime information, and even the movement of U.S. aircraft carriers in the region,” at his daily news conference.

But the main issue which was the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) between India and the U.S seem to have made some progress as officials from both sides said India and the U.S. have finalised of the text. Also India got a boost when it came to ‘Make in India initiative’ to help and support the development of our domestic defence industries and their integration into the global supply chain.

Another key agreement which was finalized in text was the crucial Information Exchange Annex under the Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Cooperation. India has a very large coastline and Aircraft Carrier battle group will enhance our maritime security because of the growing threat from China which is forcing its hegemony in South China Sea and Indian Ocean which is a major concern to practically all South East Asian Countries. Since India is the only country they can look up to who have always respected their territorial integrity. Also a lot of progress has been made and understanding has been reached to finalise the Framework for the U.S.-India Cyber Relationship.

Though no country was named but it was a clear reference to China who has been a major violator of cyber security in the U.S and India. PM Modi and President Obama are in a statement are committed to enhance cyber collaboration on critical infrastructure, cybercrime and malicious cyber activity by state and non-state actors, capacity building and cybersecurity research and development. It is now remains to be seen how Pakistan whose relationship with America has deteriorated in the past few months and China which sees itself as the regional leader will react to this latest development.