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India, Japan agree to diversify defence cooperation in new, emerging domains


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NEW DELHI (PTI):  India and Japan have agreed to diversify their defence cooperation in new and emerging domains like space and cyber as part of an aim to consolidate the overall strategic engagement.

The decision to further expand defence ties was taken at the seventh edition of India-Japan Defence Policy Dialogue that took place in Delhi on Wednesday.

In the talks, the Indian side invited Japanese defence industries to look at investment opportunities in India under the 'Make in India' initiative.

The defence dialogue took place over two weeks after Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida visited India during which he put the country as an "indispensable partner" of Japan to achieve the ambitious goal of peace, prosperity and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.

The dialogue was co-chaired by Defence Secretary Giridhar Aramane and Japan's Vice Minister of Defence for International Affairs Oka Masami.

"A wide range of issues, including service-level exercises and engagements, regional security issues and cooperation in defence equipment and technology, were discussed during the meeting," the defence ministry said.

It said the Japanese vice minister presented policy updates from their recently released National Security Strategy and National Defence Strategy.

The ministry said Aramane emphasised that both the countries should aim to deepen collaboration between the respective defence industries.

"He also invited Japanese defence industries to look at investment opportunities in India under the 'Make in India' initiative. Both sides agreed to diversify cooperation in new and emerging domains like defence space and cyber," it said in a statement.

Both sides also appreciated the growing cooperation between the services through staff talks and exercises.

"They welcomed the conduct of the inaugural fighter exercise 'Veer Guardian' between the Indian Air Force and Japanese Air Self Defence Force in January this year in Japan," the ministry said.

The Defence Policy Dialogue is an institutional mechanism between India and Japan to discuss bilateral defence cooperation.

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