Japan has no immediate plans for ‘selling or delivering’ the US-2 amphibious aircraft to India, a senior diplomat was quoted as saying by the Hindu news daily Friday.
“There is no decision about its delivery nor did the Foreign Secretaries discuss the timing of the delivery”, Yasuhisa Kawamura, Director General of Press and Public Diplomacy of Japan was quoted by the news daily.
Kawamura, after India and Japan held Foreign Secretary-level talks in Tokyo on Friday said that though Friday’s bilateral dialogue, which was held on the side-lines of a trilateral meeting of India, Japan and Australia, discussed a wide range of maritime security-related issues, the issue of supplying US-2 amphibious aircraft to India did not come up during the talks.
The absence of diplomatic progress on India acquiring the aircraft is significant in view of the fact that during Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to India in December 2015, the two countries had concluded agreements on Transfer of the Defence Equipment and Technology, and, Security Measures for the Protection of Classified Military Information, aimed at deals such as the one on the US-2, the news daily reported.
The joint statement issued during Abe’s visit had also mentioned that both sides were to work on 12-18 US-2 aircraft deal. The US-2 aircraft has been part of a long-pending demand from India and was specifically mentioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his 2014 Japan visit.
During Friday’s dialogue, the two countries discussed enhanced maritime security and freedom of navigation-related issues in the East China Sea and South China Sea as well as security-related issues of the Indo-Pacific Ocean.
The Indian Ministry of External Affairs, however, refused to respond to Kawamura’s comments on the aircraft deal.
Japan's ShinMaywa Industries has offered to set up a plant in India for US-2 amphibious aircraft to cater to international demands, according to PTI report. The move comes as the Indian Navy plans to procure six such aircraft, under a government to government deal, between 2017 and 2022
The Indian Navy is considering a $1.65 billion proposal to acquire 12 US-2i aircraft from Japanese company ShinMaywa in 2015, under the ‘Buy and Make (global) category of the Defence Procurement Procedure 2013
India and Japan are close to signing a deal to supply amphibious planes to India making this the first sale “of hardware used by the military since a weapons export ban was imposed”, according to reports. With Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh currently on a four-day visit to Tokyo, both parties are set put in motion the purchase of the US-2, a domestically-developed aircraft used by Japan's armed forces
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Japan has signed an accord to supply defense equipment and technology to Philippines alarmed by Chinese actions in South China Sea. This is the first such Japanese defense pact in the region where the US allies have been alarmed by Chinas aggressive advances in disputed territories
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