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US may give defence tech access to India

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The United States is working on giving India the same status as some of its 'very closest allies' in the area of technology and export controls by...

Deputy Secretary of Defence Ashton B Carter will be in India with a number of co-production and co-development projects to New Delhi to see whether India would be interested in them

Washington (PTI): The United States is working on giving India the same status as some of its "very closest allies" in the area of technology and export controls by getting the bureaucratic hurdles out of the way, says a top Pentagon official. As part of its efforts to take the India-US defence relationship to the next level and help New Delhi raise the indigenisation of its of its defence systems, the Pentagon has initiated several India-specific steps, details of which have not been revealed so far.

Deputy Secretary of Defence Ashton B Carter will be in India with a number of co-production and co-development projects to New Delhi to see whether India would be interested in them and could further be discussed when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh meets President Barack Obama on September 27.

"So what we're doing is in the technology and export controls area, working so that India has the same status as our very closest allies and that our system is operating on a time scale that's consistent with the needs for the Indian side to make decisions," Deputy Secretary of Defence Ashton B Carter told PTI.

Carter, who leads the US side for the Defence Technology Initiative, will have discussions with officials in India on the DTI. National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon leads the Indian side. Asserting that the US and India are destined to be partners in the world stage even though their interests do not coincide always, Carter said the Obama Administration is keen to take the India-US defence relationship to the next level and help New Delhi increase indignation of its defence system."Many find our foreign military sales programmecumbersome, and many of my Indian colleagues say the same thing to me, and I readily acknowledge that we need to get better at making it more user-friendly," Carter told PTI.

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