Spain, India explore expanding bilateral ties starting with defense

New Delhi, Nov 22 (EFE).- The third Spain-India Forum was held in New Delhi on Wednesday focusing on means to expand bilateral ties between Madrid and New Delhi, starting with defense and security.

The forum is an important platform for promoting bilateral relations that seeks to explore the assets and opportunities of bilateral cooperation between Spain and India as global partners, said the Spain-India Council Foundation, organizer of the forum together with India’s Observer Research Foundation (ORF).

During one of the forum’s events, Airbus C-295 program director Jorge Tamarit highlighted the potential of defense agreements between the two countries to strengthen relations.

These aircraft, 16 of which will be manufactured in Seville (Spain) by Airbus for the Indian Air Force (IAF) and another 40 will be assembled in the Asian country, are “really like a business card, a first step in the Indian market” with direct connection to Spain, he said.

Spain is also trying to reach an agreement for the manufacture of high-tech conventional submarines for the Indian navy’s Project-75.

“Ever since the announcement of this contract for the C295 tactical transport aircraft and the first one has been delivered, there’s again a great deal of optimism about Spain,” said ORF analyst Abhijit Singh.

The strategic relationship between the two countries goes beyond the defense agreements, with Spain’s renewed interest in the Indo-Pacific with a strong India “as a good news for world security,” said Colonel Jose Pardo de Santayana of the Spanish Institute of Strategic Studies.

The forum was held for the first time in India after the first two editions took place in Madrid.

It also covered key areas such as the participation of the European Union and Latin America in the Indo-Pacific, university cooperation and the global dimension of the Spanish language.

“Spain looks at India through a holistic lens, cherishing the deep-rooted cultural ties, defense technology sharing and partnerships, and the immense potential for educational collaborations,” Spain’s Ambassador to India, Jose María Ridao, said in a statement. EFE


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