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India, UK discuss future growth of defence ties


NEW DELHI (PTI): Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday spoke to his British counterpart Ben Wallace with a focus on ways to enhance bilateral defence industrial cooperation, especially in co-development and co-production of military hardware in India.

Singh, referring to industrial cooperation, said potential areas of cooperation were identified, but he did not elaborate on it.
The Defence Minister described the telephonic conversation as "cordial" and "positive" and said it was aimed at future growth of bilateral defence relationship.

"It was a pleasure to speak with the UK Secretary of State for Defence, Mr. Ben Wallace. The conversation was cordial, positive and focused on future growth of the bilateral defence relationship," he tweeted.

"We reviewed the ongoing defence cooperation and expressed satisfaction over the bilateral military-to-military engagements. Discussed a wide range of defence and security issues in our conversation including regional developments and the Indo-Pacific," Singh said.

The Defence Minister said the discussions focused on ways to enhance defence industrial cooperation and the potential areas for it were identified.

"We also discussed ways to enhance defence industrial cooperation and identified potential areas of cooperation. Also suggested that UK companies should become part of the India Growth Story and participate in co-development and co-production in India," he added.

In a statement, the Defence Ministry said both ministers discussed a wide range of defence and security issues, including regional developments and the Indo-Pacific.

"The ministers briefly reviewed their ongoing defence cooperation and expressed satisfaction at their bilateral military-to-military engagements," it said.

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