This year USIBC engaged the Indian Ministry of Defense at the highest levels.
The message we received was clear: Real progress is being made towards USIBC’s policy objectives.
Both in Bangalore and in Washington D.C. our members were repeatedly informed that the Indian government has heard USIBC’s suggestions, read our policy submissions, and is taking action on the issues essential to facilitating U.S.-India defense & aerospace collaboration. The Secretary of Defense Production and the Director General for Acquisition directly cited USIBC’s work in their remarks including offset policy revision and implementation, technology security & interoperability agreements with the United States government, Foreign Direct Investment limitations, indigenous content requirements, and pricing evaluations that fairly consider the U.S. Foreign Military Sales process.
The Bottom Line: We – the American and Indian defense & aerospace industry and our government partners – are talking to each other rather than past each other. The tone and tenor of our dialogues are in a much better place than just a few years ago.
Looking forward we anticipate the conclusions of an Industrial Security Agreement that allows classified information to be shared between U.S. and Indian private companies – a perquisite to any major collaboration under the Strategic Partnership model of the DPP, private industry input to U.S.-India defense technology and trade discussions, and newly possible consideration by the MoD of advanced American defense systems made capable for export by the Communications, Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA). One of USIBC’s priorities moving forward is that dialogue on COMCASA implementation includes healthy input from industry so that when the Indian government is ready to make major acquisition decisions following India’s election the government is fully informed of the capabilities and partnership opportunities available from the United States.