New Delhi: Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's US visit, a high-level Defence Ministry team is there to discuss the opportunities of jointly developing and manufacturing military hardware.
A Defence Ministry team led by Secretary (Defence Production) G Mohan Kumar and including Director General (Acquisition) Asharam Sihag is in Washington and discussing joint ventures with their American counterparts, Ministry sources told.
The Secretary (Defence Production) is also the Indian representative for the Defence Trade and Technology Initiative (DTTI) proposed by the US under which it has offered co-production of the third-generation anti-tank Javelin missiles and other systems, they said.
Defence cooperation is expected to be one of the major focus areas during the Prime Minister's US visit where India is expected to finalise the deals for procuring American attack and heavylift helicopters for around Rs 15,000 crore.
In the last decade, India has emerged as one of the major buyers of American military equipment and has supplied equipment worth over Rs 60,000 crore in these years.
The equipment supplied by the US includes the C-17 strategic lift transport aircraft, C-130J Super Hercules special operations planes, P-8I anti-submarine warfare planes and the AN-TPQ weapon locating radars.
The US has also offered to support India in establishing an indigenous weapon manufacturing sector in line with Modi's goal of achieving self-reliance in this sector.
The Prime Minister will leave for the US tomorrow.