Bilateral delegation level meeting with US
Dr. Mark T. Esper, Hon’ble Secretary of Defence of the United States of America is visiting India for the 2+2 Ministerial Meeting. Today Shri Rajnath Singh, Hon’ble Raksha Mantri had a bilateral meeting with him in South Block, New Delhi. The two ministers reviewed bilateral defence cooperation spanning military to military cooperation, secure communication systems and information sharing, defence trade and industrial issues and also discussed ways to take bilateral cooperation forward.
Both the Ministers expressed satisfaction at the close engagements between the respective Armed Forces. They discussed potential new areas of cooperation, both at Service to Service level and at the joint level. They called for continuation of existing defence dialogue mechanisms during the pandemic, at all levels, particularly the Military Cooperation Group (MCG). They also discussed requirements of expanding deployments of liaison officers.
The two ministers expressed satisfaction that agreement of BECA will be signed during the visit. US Secretary of Defence welcomed Australia’s participation in the exercise MALABAR 2020.
Hon’ble Raksha Mantri elaborated upon the initiatives under the ATMANIRBHAR BHARAT to encourage investments in the defence industry in India and invited US companies to make avail of the liberalized policies and the favorable Defence Industry ecosystem in India
India will gain access to precision data and topographical images – on a real time basis – from United States military satellites under an agreement to be signed during the ongoing visit of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary Mark Esper.
The agreement to share this data – BECA (Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement) – is the third and final “foundational” understanding the US has with close international partners. The two countries have already signed agreements to exchange military logistics and enable secure communications.
In a statement released on Monday the government said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his American counterpart, Mr Esper, expressed satisfaction that BECA would be signed during this visit and also at the close engagements between the armed forces of the two countries.
They also reviewed bilateral defence spanning military-to-military cooperation, secure communications systems and information sharing, and also discussed potential new areas of cooperation.
Rajnath Singh said the talks would add “new vigour” to India-US defence relations and cooperation