In a sign of growing cooperation between India and the US, both the countries have agreed to hold talks on anti-submarine warfare.
This comes at a time when numerous reports have emerged of Chinese naval submarines popping up in the Indian Ocean, particularly near the Andaman and Nicobar Islands
An Indian submarine gizmodo
India and the US are seeking to help each other in the detection of submarines in the region.
China’s Navy has been aggressive in its operations in the Indian Ocean Region
(IOR). Significant military investments in Chinese maritime strategy have enabled a dramatic shift from a traditionally brown-water force to a blue-water navy. As a result, China’s naval ships are increasingly serving outside of their regional waters.
The US has been wary of the Chinese Navy in the disputed South China Sea, parts of which is under its control in spite of repeated protests by other contenders, such as Taiwan and the Philippines.
“These types of basic engagements will be the building blocks for an enduring Navy-to-Navy relationship that we hope will grow over time into a shared ASW capability,” a US official had said.
New Delhi agreed last month to open up its military bases to the US in exchange for access to weapons’ technology to help it narrow the gap with China. The joint exercises will be held in the northern Philippine Sea in June and concentrate on anti-submarine warfare, an Indian naval source said.
Meanwhile, India is also set to participate in a multinational maritime exercise in the strategically important South China Sea, which will have the US, Japan, Russia, Australia and China along with other countries as participants.
The participants of the exercise, to be held in Brunei, include Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar and South Korea. It is being held at the South China Sea. INS Airavat, amphibious warship, will be part of the exercise.