Defence ties to get push at ‘2+2’ with U.S

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News:India and the US will meet for the second 2+2 ministerial dialogue in Washington,US.

Facts:

About 2+2 dialogue:

  • The 2+2 is a format of dialogue where the defense and foreign ministers or secretaries meet with their counterparts from another country.
  • The 2+2 ministerial dialogue between India and the US was started in 2017.
  • This new mechanism had replaced Strategic and Commercial Dialogue, a 2+2 meeting of the foreign and commerce ministers of the two countries.

Issues to be discussed at the 2+2 dialogue:

  • The key item is the signing of the Industrial Security Annex (ISA),an enabling agreement that will allow US defense manufacturers to do business with Indian private sector companies.
  • The two countries will also review the steps being taken to operationalise the foundational agreement Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) which was signed during the previous 2+2 talks.
  • However,discussions on the last foundational agreement namely Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-spatial Cooperation (BECA) are not concluded yet as some differences still remains.

Additional information:

Foundational agreement between US and it’s partners:

About COMCASA:

  • COMCASA is an India-specific version of the Communication and Information on Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA).
  • The agreement was signed in 2018.It came into force immediately and is valid for a period of 10 years.
  • COMCASA allows India to procure specialised equipment for encrypted communications from the U.S. origin military platforms.
  • It also enables greater communications interoperability between the militaries of India and the US.

Other agreements:

  • India had already signed the General Security Of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) in 2002 and the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement(LEMOA) in 2016.
  • GSOMIA allows the militaries from the two countries to share the intelligence gathered by them.
  • On the other hand,LEMOA allows both countries to have access to each other’s designated military facilities for refueling and replenishment.
  • The remaining one is BECA which is yet to be signed.It will allow India and US to share geospatial and satellite data with each other.