UK spearheads new defence industry joint working group to strengthen defence collaboration with India

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"A stronger UK-India defence relationship is an essential element of the British and Indian governments’ Comprehensive Strategic Partnership" - Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India. Photo credit: Alex Ellis / Twitter.

Defence industry organisations from India and the UK have come together to create a new Defence Industry Joint Working Group for more effective cooperation. The initiative is supported by the UK Government.

The inaugural meeting of the UK-India Defence Industry Joint Working Group was held on the side-lines of DefExpo 2022 in Gandhinagar, Gujarat today.

DefExpo will see representation from 20 UK defence companies. UK industry is already integrating Indian defence suppliers into their global supply chain, manufacturing defence equipment not just for India but for the world.

The Joint Working Group is part of an ongoing initiative between the two countries to strengthen the defence and security partnership through industrial collaboration. The UK recently issued its first Open General Export License (OGEL) in the Indo-Pacific region to India, shortening delivery times for defence procurement.

The Royal Air Force (RAF) recently conducted a subject matter expertise exchange with Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) during the visit of Eurofighter Typhoon, Voyager and A400 in New Delhi and also held joint-flying exercises with the Indian Air Force (IAF).

Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India, said:

A stronger UK-India defence relationship is an essential element of the British and Indian governments’ Comprehensive Strategic Partnership. The British Government and industry presence at DefExpo is further proof of this, as is our support for co-creation of next generation capabilities that will be fully owned by India. The UK supports Prime Minister Modi’s ambitions of Make in India, Make for the World.

Mark Goldsack, Director, UK Defence and Security Exports, said:

This is another step in the growing defence relations between the two countries, who are working to establish a portfolio of collaborative projects to support the development of new technologies and capabilities as agreed under the 2030 Roadmap. The UK sees it is in its own interest that India becomes self-reliant in its defence needs. The UK is a world leader in critical defence technologies such as jet engine developments and electric propulsion technology. We are keen to share this expertise with India supported by our respective industries.

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