Tuesday, Sep 27, 2022

India Discusses Security And Defense With European Union

Indian and European Union have agreed to add to the maritime security and increasingly participate in the co-development and co-production of defense equipment.

Navy Ships patrolling maritime boundaries. File Photo

In a significant move, India and the European Union have discussed increasing maritime security cooperation and the prospect of co-development and co-production of defense equipment. The deliberations took place at the first-ever India-EU Security and Defence Consultations held in Brussels pursuant to a decision taken at the India-EU summit in July 2020.

The Indian Embassy in the Belgium capital said India's participation in Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) also figured in the talks on Friday. It said the wide-ranging discussions on Friday covered the evolving security situation in Europe, India's neighborhood, and the Indo-Pacific.

PESCO is a part of the EU's security and defense policy. Its establishment in December 2017 has raised cooperation on defense among the participating EU member states to a new level. The embassy said the two sides noted a number of positive developments in the area of security and defense cooperation in recent years, including the establishment of a regular maritime security dialogue.

"During the consultations, the two sides also discussed various means of increasing India-EU cooperation on maritime security, implementation of
the European code of conduct on arms export to India's neighborhood, cooperation in co-development and co-production of defense equipment, including India's participation in PESCO," it said in a statement.

"Both sides agreed to increase India-EU defense and security cooperation as an important pillar of the bilateral strategic relations," it said. The discussions had taken place under the shadow of the crisis in Ukraine.