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Defence Hardware: India keen to work with Bangladesh 

The Daily Star , Nov 21, 2020

India is keen to work with Bangladesh on defence hardware platforms like Akash missile, radars, mortars, artillery guns and ammunitions, said Raj Kumar, secretary (defence production) of Indian defence ministry.

Addressing a virtual session on "India and Bangladesh-Make for the World" yesterday, Raj also said that Indian shipyards were willing to partner with Bangladeshi shipyards for joint ventures, co-development and collaboration for both commercial and defence requirements.

He said that the defence cooperation and partnership between India and Bangladesh has made significant gains in the last few years.

Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FICCI), jointly with the High Commission of India, Dhaka and the Indian Defence Ministry organised the programme.

Raj said the close proximity of Indian shipyards to Bangladesh is an additional advantage for both the countries.

"This may result in a long-term strategic partnership in production, development and maintenance. It will be a win-win situation for both the nations to achieve their common objectives. The strategic partnership between India-Bangladesh can become a pillar of regional strength and economic cooperation," the FICCI quoted Raj as saying in a press release.

Sanjay Jaju, additional secretary (defence production) of the ministry, said the Indian defence sector has a lot of potential and invited Bangladeshi companies to invest in this sector.

"We have opened up two defence industrial corridors in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and both corridors will leverage existing ordnance factories and private manufactures in the region. We invite investments from Bangladesh in these corridors and explore opportunities where we can co-produce and co-develop equipment for mutual use," Raju said.

Addressing the programme, Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury, minister of shipping in Bangladesh, said Bangladesh is the third largest economy in South Asia with a rich history in ship-building.

"Today, ship-building is a growing industry in Bangladesh and has great potential. Since independence, Bangladesh has created a large fleet of 20,000 inland and coastal commercial vessels," he said.

Vikram K Doraiswami, Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka, said, "There is a natural synergy between India and Bangladesh in working together to develop and leverage each other's capacities as a matter of jointly harnessing capabilities for each other."