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US Looks To Turn India Into Navy Logistics Hub In South Asia

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In South Asia, where it has limited resources for such capabilities, the US wants to make India a hub for restocking and maintaining Navy vessels.

When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met with US President Joe Biden at the White House in late June for a summit, they committed to broadening defence and economic partnerships. The two leaders issued a joint statement at the summit that reads, “The US-India Major Defense Partnership has emerged as a pillar of global peace and security.”

The United States will fund India’s development of infrastructure for restocking, maintaining, and repairing ships and aircraft.

In the context of the June summit while talking to reporters, Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder, the Pentagon press secretary, said “We’ll have much more to follow in the near future, but the aim here is to make India a logistics hub for the United States and other partners in the Indo-Pacific region.”

The US Navy will establish agreements for ship repairs with Indian shipyards as part of this endeavour.

According to the White House, the shipyard owned by Larsen & Toubro which is located in the Chennai city has collaborated with the Indian navy to join for a Master Ship Repair Agreement. Separate agreements between the navy and two other shipbuilders with locations in Mumbai and Goa are nearly complete.

The American military aims to increase its capacity for managing resupply operations and repairs promptly in the Indo-Pacific region. The navy will waste less time pausing operations for ships and aircraft if it has access to additional hubs in the area. Joint drills with foreign nations might be funded with the time saved.

Assistant professor at the Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies Jeffrey Payne said, “There’s a big gap between the bases the United States sustains in the bilateral hub agreements they have in the Middle East and then the Western Pacific. So, India fulfils this.”

Currently, Japan and Singapore act as the US’s primary naval bases in Asia.

According to the 2021 edition of the Pentagon’s annual report on China, there are around 355 ships and submarines in the Chinese navy, making it the largest in terms of numbers in the entire globe. American ships risk lagging behind China in the context of naval capability, eroding deterrence, if they are unable to spend more time at sea.

Many people think that executing supply operations in the Indo-Pacific during emergencies will prove more challenging than analogous operations in Europe, with its land approaches, because the Indo-Pacific is defined by enormous lengths of sea.

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