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USA approves sale of six P-8I patrol aircraft to India

USA approves sale of six P-8I patrol aircraft to India

  • Recently, the US has allowed the sale of 6, P-8I petrol aircraft and its equipment to India.
  • India will soon get 6 such aircraft. The most important thing is that all these aircraft will have ‘Encrypted Systems’. In the year 2019, the Defense Acquisition Council of India approved the purchase of these aircraft.
  • It may be noted that India has signed the Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) with the US.

P-8I Aircraft

  • P-8I aircraft are basically a type of P-8A Poseidon aircraft. The P-8A has been developed by the Boeing Company, which replaced the US Navy’s old P-3 fleet.
  • The P-8I aircraft is a long-range maritime patrol and anti-submarine combat aircraft. It has a speed of 907 km per hour.
  • With an operating range of more than 1,200 nautical miles, the P-8I can detect threats, and dismantle them before approaching Indian shores in the event of a threat.
  • The Indian Navy was the first buyer of the P-8I aircraft in 2009 as an international customer.

India-US Defense Relations:

  • Such sales will strengthen the strategic relationship between the US and India. The US considers India an important force in the direction of political stability, peace and economic progress in the Indo-Pacific and South Asian regions.
  • In the year 2008, defense trade between India and the US was almost zero. Subsequently, in the year 2020, this trade reached about US $ 20 billion. Such defense procurement symbolizes the growing defense relationship between the two countries.
  • Under this, the US also declared India a “Major Defense Partner” in the year 2016, and in the year 2018, the US made India a NATO partner under the Strategic Trade Authority-1 (STA-1).

The major four fundamental agreements between the US and their partners-

  • General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA): It allows sharing of intelligence collected between armies. India signed it in the year 2002.
  • Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA): This agreement makes it easy for the armies of the two countries to access each other’s military facilities. It is a fuel exchange agreement for transferring fuel to the sea. India signed it in the year 2016.
  • Communication and Information on Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA): The COMCASA Agreement is an India-specific version of CISMOA relating to communication and information. India signed it in the year 2018.
  • Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA): BECA allows India and US troops to share geospatial information and satellite data with each other. BECA was signed by India in the year 2020.

Defense Acquisition Council (DAC)

  • The Defense Acquisition Council is the apex body of the Ministry of Defense to decide on new policies and capital acquisition matters for the three services (Army, Navy and Air Force) and the Indian Coast Guard. It is headed by the Minister of Defense.
  • It was established in 2001 after the Kargil War, following the recommendations of the Cabinet to improve the national security system.

Source- The Hindu

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