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Remarks by Secretary Hagel at the Observer Research Foundation

Speaker: Chuck Hagel, Distinguished Professor, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
Published August 9, 2014

On August 9. 2014, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel spoke at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi about the U.S.-India cooperation and about U.S.-India military-to-military relations. Secretary Hagel discussed India's contributions to regional security and joint military exercises like MALABAR and economic partnerships such as the U.S.-India Defense Trade and Technology Initiative (DTTI).

Excerpt:

we can do more to forge a defense industrial partnership -- one that would transform our nations' defense cooperation from simply buying and selling to co-production, co-development, and freer exchange of technology. And we have no better opportunity than the U.S.-India Defense Trade and Technology Initiative, or DTTI.

Announced by Secretary Panetta here in Delhi two years ago, and shepherded by former Deputy Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, DTTI was based on a simple premise: The top leadership here in India and in the United States decided to raise our strategic partnership to a new level, and we needed a new way of doing business. We agreed that, to help ensure that India's military becomes as capable as it could be, we needed deeper and broader defense trade and technology cooperation.

DTTI is about much more than defense deals. It is designed to support the development of a strong and self-sufficient Indian defense industrial base -- one that develops mutually beneficial, long-term partnerships with top American defense companies, and helps create jobs in both our nations. The United States has made no similar effort with any other nation; it is unique to our relationship with India.

This initiative was not designed to replace either of our nations' basic procedures for buying, selling, developing, or producing defense systems. Nor was it designed to change the basic principles that govern our two nations' complex defense industrial ecosystems. Instead, it was crafted to ensure that our defense development and production activities reflect our shared strategic imperative: the imperative of closer partnership.

The DTTI now has on the table over a dozen specific cooperative proposals, proposals that would transfer significant qualitative capability, technology, and production know-how.

To build a broad foundation for co-development, and because both our nations hone the leading edge of scientific and technological innovation, we are also working together to advance our joint Cooperative Science and Technology Priorities. This includes areas ranging from big data to cognitive sciences to chemical and biological defense, and material sciences.

Going forward, the United States welcomes new proposals from India, especially in areas we can most productively partner in co-production and co-development.

But the challenge today is not a shortage -- not a shortage of proposals. Instead, for both our nations, the challenge is to seize the opportunities...those opportunities that are before us today.

On some, we are nearing agreement. The Indian government's recently proposed reforms on foreign direct investment (FDI) caps will help move us forward. Further progress and clarity on FDI caps and offsets would help push our defense relationship toward its full potential.

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