India, US hold Industrial Security Agreement Summit, to set up Joint Working Group
The summit discussed the protocol for the exchange of classified information between the defence industries of the two countries.
New Delhi: India and the United States have held their Industrial Security Agreement (ISA) summit in Delhi, wherein the two sides agreed in-principle to establish the Industrial Security Joint Working Group.
The summit which was started on September 27 and concluded on October 1 discussed the protocol for the exchange of classified information between the defence industries of the two countries.
The group will meet periodically to align the policies and procedures expeditiously that will allow the defence industries to collaborate on cutting edge defence technologies, the defence ministry said.
The ISA was signed in December 2019 and the Designated Security Authorities (DSAs) — Anurag Bajpai and David Paul Bagnati from Indian and US sides respectively discussed the ways to create a roadmap for the implementation of the ISA.
In 2002, the two countries had signed the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) to ensure security standards for safeguarding critical information shared by the US with India. The ISA is a part of the GSOMIA.
The ISA is pivotal for the US-based defence equipment makers bidding for big-ticket Indian contracts to tie-up Indian private firms.
In 2016, the US had declared India as its major defence partner and signed the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA). As per the LEMOA deal, the militarise of both sides can use each other’s bases for repair and replenishment of supplies as well as provide for strong ties.
In 2018, they also inked Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) for interoperability between the two militaries and provides for sale of high end technology from Washington to New Delhi.
In 2020, the two countries signed Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA), wherein they can share high defence technology, geospatial maps and classified satellite data between their militaries.