India and the US are poised to unveil defence and know-how offers together with a purchase order of American spy drones during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to Washington on Thursday.
India’s settlement to buy armed MQ-9B SeaGuardian drones, that are produced by General Atomics, will come as Modi turns into solely the third world chief to make a state visit to the US since President Joe Biden took workplace in 2021.
The leaders will even announce that reminiscence chipmaker Micron will open a $2.75bn semiconductor meeting and take a look at facility in India, which can embody $800mn in funding from the US firm.
“After years of strengthening ties in a bipartisan context, the US-India partnership is deeper and more expansive than . . . ever,” stated a senior US official.
Biden and Modi will even signal an settlement that can end in General Electric co-producing fighter jet engines in India, which a second senior US official described as a “trailblazing initiative”.
The agreements, which additionally embody efforts to enhance co-operation in area, mark an enormous push by the US to draw India into its orbit as a part of a method to work with allies and companions to counter China.
Since taking workplace, Biden has invested in boosting defence and safety co-operation with New Delhi, together with resurrecting the “Quad” safety group that features India, Japan and Australia.
While India maintains a non-aligned overseas coverage, it has moved nearer to the US amid rising tensions with China.
India and China have an unresolved dispute alongside their almost 3,500km-long border, which final escalated into violence in May 2020 when Chinese and Indian troops clashed within the Galwan Valley, main to the deaths of 24 troopers from the 2 militaries. Each aspect has since maintained about 60,000 troops close to the border.
American officers say the clashes have made India extra keen to accomplice with Washington. The drones would permit India to considerably enhance its intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations, the second US official stated.
A US defence official this week stated that the safety offers would enhance interoperability between the US and Indian militaries.
The first senior official stated the international locations had been working extra intently on maritime and different contingencies. “We are planning more together [and] we are training more together,” stated the official. “We’re engaging in a variety of scenario developments and . . . you will see that co-operation will extend increasingly not just to the Indian Ocean but to the Pacific Ocean.”
After arriving in Washington on Wednesday, Modi, who dined with Biden that day, will meet the US president once more on Thursday earlier than talking to a joint session of Congress — changing into certainly one of solely a handful of world leaders to achieve this greater than as soon as.
Biden has come beneath criticism for granting Modi a state visit, given accusations from critics that Indian democracy is beneath risk from a squeeze on free expression and incitement of violence towards minority Muslims and Christians.
The US official stated Biden would strategy discussions about human rights with “a degree of humility” and wouldn’t interact in “hectoring, lecturing or scolding”.
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