India-USA 2+2 Dialogue 2020
- 28 Oct 2020
- 4 min read
Why in News
Recently, India and the USA have concluded the 3rd India-USA 2+2 dialogue in New Delhi.
- The USA reiterated its support to India in defending its territorial sovereignty in the background of the ongoing standoff between India-China.
- It also referred to the greater threats posed by China in the Indo-Pacific region and by the Covid-19 pandemic in general.
- The first two rounds of these dialogues between both the countries were held in 2018 and 2019.
- India has signed the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) with the USA.
- BECA will enable the exchange of geospatial data and information between the two countries and will improve the accuracy of India’s missiles in precision strikes.
- The geospatial maps and charts to be shared, will be acquired from multiple sources like satellites, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), reconnaissance aircraft, aerostats among others.
- As part of measures to enhance military to military cooperation, Liaison Officers at each other's establishments could be leveraged to enhance information sharing.
- BECA is one of the four foundational military communication agreements between the two countries. The other three are:
- General Security Of Military Information Agreement.
- Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement.
- Communications and Information Security Memorandum of Agreement.
- Both countries released a Joint Statement on shared Indo-USA goals in the Asia-Pacific region and emphasised that the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea should not prejudice the legitimate rights and interests of any nation in accordance with international law.
- They also decided to expand joint capacity building activities with partner countries in the Indo-Pacific region.
- Other Steps Taken:
- Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Technical Cooperation in Earth Observations and Earth Sciences.
- Agreement to extend the duration of the MoU on the Global Center for Nuclear Energy Partnership.
- Agreement on the electronic exchange of customs data.
- Letter of intent regarding cooperation in traditional Indian medicines.
- Discussions on the status of Afghanistan and support for its peace process.
- 2+2 Ministerial is the highest-level institutional mechanism between the two countries.
- It is a format of dialogue where the defence/foreign ministers or secretaries meet with their counterparts from another country.
- India holds such talks with Australia, Japan and the USA.
- The signing of BECA is a significant achievement for India as it is a sign of the USA accepting the Indian request for cooperation in the advanced field of maritime domain awareness.
- India-USA’s national security convergences have grown closer in a more multipolar world and the meetings as well as the agreements not only advance their individual interests but also ensure that the bilateral cooperation between them makes a positive contribution in the world arena.