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India, US discuss enhancing defence co-production, interoperability for free, open Indo-Pacific at INDUS-X Summit

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New Delhi | February 22, 2024 5:54:30 AM IST
The Ministry of Defence and the US Department of Defence participated in the second India-US Defence Acceleration Ecosystem (INDUS-X) Summit in the national capital and discussed enhancing military interoperability to support the vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific.

During the summit on Wednesday, the speakers explored opportunities to co-produce advanced military capabilities and create resilient defence supply chains.

"Panel participants expanded on several themes inspired by the original INDUS-X collaboration agenda: deepening defence industrial partnerships, increasing collaborative research and testing facility access, mobilizing private capital to support critical defence technologies, and commercializing dual-use technologies. The governments also led a hybrid information session on export controls for US and Indian defence start-ups that aim to form partnerships and co-develop technology," the US Department of Defence said in a statement.

The summit included announcements on priority efforts under INDUS-X including joint challenges. The Defence Innovation Unit (DIU) and Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) announced the winners of the first two INDUS-X joint challenges, in which companies compete to develop technologies that solve military problems for the defence ministries of the two countries.

Following a competitive process supported by military service partners and both governments, 10 US and Indian companies won over USD 1 million to develop technologies related to undersea communications and maritime intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR).

At the Summit, DIU and iDEX also announced that they will open applications for two joint challenges focused on space-based ISR in the coming months, the statement read.

US companies, universities, and non-profit organizations announced a new consortium committed to expanding testing facility access.

The consortium will explore pathways for defence and dual-use companies in the INDUS-X network to test, refine, and integrate their technologies at premier testing ranges across India and the US.

The Summit featured a meeting of two advisory bodies under INDUS-X.

First, US and Indian officials convened for the second meeting of the bilateral Senior Advisory Group, which guides future cooperation under the initiative.

Second, the US Institute of Peace moderated the inaugural meeting of the INDUS-X Senior Leaders Forum, comprised of US and Indian leaders across industry, private equity, academia, and other sectors who convene to share feedback that informs the trajectory of INDUS-X.

The US-India Business Council (USIBC) and the Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM) organized the Summit, which convened US and Indian defence companies, investors, researchers, and government officials.

"The Ministry of Defence and the US Department of Defence launched the bilateral initiative INDUS-X in June 2023 to spur defence innovation in critical technologies by facilitating partnerships among US and Indian companies, investors, and universities. INDUS-X is the innovation bridge envisioned by the US and Indian national security advisors under the Initiative on Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET)," the statement added.

India and the US have also released an INDUS-X Fact Sheet to outline both the initiative's progress to date and priority near-term efforts. (ANI)

 
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