India and Japan have begun technical discussions for research collaboration for unmanned ground vehicle, Japanese envoy Kenji Hiramatsu said today, noting that Tokyo's readiness to provide New Delhi with US-2 amphibian aircraft reflects the high degree of trust between the two nations.
Noting that the defence ties between the two countries are on an upswing, Kenji said more progress is expected in other fields including humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, counter terrorism. In this context, he said the first-ever bilateral exercise between the Japanese Ground Self Defence Force and Indian Army is also on the cards.
This month, the navies of the two countries participated in Malabar 2018, a trilateral exercise involving the US.
As for the area of equipment and technology, we have started technical discussions for future research collaboration in the area of unmanned ground vehicle and robotics.
Also, our readiness to provide our state-of-the-art US-2 amphibian aircraft has been appreciated by the GoI (Government of India) as symbolising the high degree of trust between the two countries, the envoy said.
He was speaking at a reception on the occasion of 68th Japan Self Defense Forces Day held at the embassy here.
India intends to procure amphibian aircraft US-2 for its navy for better search and rescue (SAR) missions and surveillance purpose.
Alluding to the growing Chinese assertiveness in the region without naming any country, the envoy said the security environment surrounding Asia has transformed in the recent years and is continuing to evolve.
In response to these changes, Japan undertook major reviews in its security policy including the development of its security legislation three years ago, he said.
Our new security policy is a testament to the resolve of Japan to take further responsibility in ensuring global peace and stability. Here I want to make clear that our path of a peace-loving nation as stipulated in the Constitution remains unchanged, he said.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe paid a visit to India last year during which, Kenji said, the two countries agreed to further explore the potential for a deeper bilateral cooperation and synergy on regional and global issues.
There have been several high-level visits from Japan this year. In March, Admiral Kawano visited India in January for the first time as the Chief of Joint Staff of Japan.
This month, the two sides had wide-ranging strategic discussions on regional and global issues and various areas of defence cooperation through the Defence Policy Dialogue and the "2 plus 2 vice-ministerial Dialogue", held here last week.
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