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Brazil minister heads India to improve defence ties


BRASILIA (AFP): Brazilian Defence Minister Celso Amorim is to travel to India this week for talks on boosting bilateral military cooperation, his office announced.

Brazil and India are members of the BRICS group of emerging powers (along with China, Russia and South Africa) and Brasilia views its multi-faceted partnership with New Delhi, including in the defence field, as a "strategic priority."

Amorim was due in New Delhi Saturday at the start of a five-day visit that will include talks with Prime Minister Manmoham Singh and Defence Minister A K Antony as well as visits of military installations, his ministry said in a statement released Tuesday.

India "has one of the world's biggest armed forces" and like Brazil "seeks to reduce its technological dependence on other countries," the statement added.

"There is a great potential for scientific, technological cooperation (with India), to develop projects of mutual interest."

Brazil is keen on expanding its own defence industry and its military purchases to upgrade its air and naval forces are conditioned on technology transfer and construction in this country.

Amorim was expected to discuss naval cooperation with his Indian counterparts, particularly plans to build aircraft carriers and Scorpene-class submarines, in addition to expand exchanges between military academies of the two countries.

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Brazil  India  Minister  

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