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India-EU Sign MoU On Semiconductors

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India-EU Sign MoU On Semiconductors


Union Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw during a visit to Silicon Valley, USA

New Delhi: An India-EU Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on semiconductors was signed on Friday, ahead of the Trade and Technology Council meeting in New Delhi, according to the Ministry of External Affairs press release.

The MoU was signed by Minister of Electronics, IT and Communications Ashwini Vaishnaw and the European Commissioner for Internal Markets Thierry Breton.

The MoU aims at increasing the resilience of the semiconductor value chain in India and the EU and covers cooperation in wide areas covering research and innovation, talent development, partnerships and exchange of market information, as per the release.

The MoU symbolizes the strong commitment between India and the EU to work towards building robust semiconductor supply chains and work together on innovation.

Meanwhile, a virtual meeting of India-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) was held in New Delhi on Friday.

The Indian side was led by External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar, Minister of Commerce and Industry (CIM) Piyush Goyal and Minister of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) Ashwini Vaishnaw.

The EU delegation was led by Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and Vice-President Vera Jourova.

The TTC was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen during the latter’s visit to India in April 2022.

The inaugural ministerial meeting of TTC was held in Brussels on May 16, 2023, where all three working groups under TTC set out their cooperation on a wide range of issues including semiconductors, high-performance computing, digital public infrastructures, clean energy technologies, supply chain resilience and trade issues.

During the virtual meeting, the co-chairs reviewed the progress achieved in the working groups since the first ministerial meeting and also discussed the future action plans of these working groups, as per the release.

The co-chairs provided strategic guidance to the working groups on strategic technologies and digital connectivity; clean and green energy technologies; and trade, Investment and resilient supply chains towards achieving the objectives set out for TTC during its establishment at the highest levels.

They expressed satisfaction at the progress achieved in the working groups till date, particularly in the areas of semiconductors, high-performance computing, digital public infrastructure, EV batteries and its recycling, waste to energy, resilient supply chains and FDI screening.

They also stressed taking the collaboration through research and innovation to the next phase of implementation in terms of practical outcomes/projects, through more intensive stakeholder consultations before the next TTC meeting and India-EU Summit.

Both sides agreed to hold the next meeting of the TTC in India back-to-back with the India-EU Summit at a mutually convenient date early next year.

EAM Jaishankar wrote on X: “Co-chaired the India-EU Trade & Technology Council (TTC) virtually along with my colleagues @PiyushGoyal & @AshwiniVaishnaw. Thank our EU counterparts @VDombrovskis & @VeraJourova for their partnership.”

“Noted the progress since our first meeting in May 2023 in digital and strategic technologies; clean energy and green technologies; and trade and investment and resilient value chains. Committed to promoting more engagements, bringing in practical initiatives and ensuring economic security,” the EAM wrote.

EU Ambassador to India Herve Delphin said: “The #EU- #India MoU on Semiconductors signed !! Paving the way for closer cooperation in this strategic sector. An important deliverable of the EU-India Trade and Technology Council #TTC.”

Meanwhile, Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal on Sunday discussed progress in India-EU Free Trade Agreement negotiations with European Commission’s Executive Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis.

“Discussed progress of the India-EU Free Trade Agreement negotiations with my friend @VDombrovskis, Executive Vice President of the European Commission,” the Union Commerce Minister wrote on ‘X’. 





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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’

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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’


NEW DELHI: India tested its nuclear capable K-4 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), designed to have a strike range of 3,500 km, for the second time in six days on Friday. The missile test, as the one conducted on January 19, was undertaken from an undersea platform in the shape of a submersible pontoon off the coast of Andhra Pradesh according to a report by Rajat Pandit of TOI.

The solid-fuelled K-4 missile is being developed by DRDO to arm the country’s nuclear-powered submarines in the shape of INS Arihant and its under-development sister vessels. INS Arihant, which became fully operational in November 2018 to complete India’s nuclear triad, is currently armed with the much shorter K-15 missiles with a 750 km range.

“The K-4 is now virtually ready for its serial production to kick-off. The two tests have demonstrated its capability to emerge straight from underwater and undertake its parabolic trajectory,” said a source.

India has the land-based Agni missiles, with the over 5,000-km Agni-V inter-continental ballistic missile now in the process of being inducted, and fighter jets jury-rigged to deliver nuclear weapons. But INS Arihant gives the country’s deterrence posture much more credibility because nuclear-powered submarines armed with nuclear-tipped missiles are considered the most secure, survivable and potent platforms for retaliatory strikes.

Once the K-4 missiles are inducted, they will help India narrow the gap with countries like the US, Russia and China, which have over 5,000-km range SLBMs. The K-4 missiles are to be followed by the K-5 and K-6 missiles in the 5,000-6,000 km range class.

The 6,000-ton INS Arihant, which is propelled by an 83 MW pressurised light-water reactor at its core, in turn, is to be followed by INS Arighat, which was launched in 2017. The next generation of nuclear submarines, currently called S-4 and S-4*, will be much larger in size.





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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%

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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%


India has received clearance to upgrade 84 Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets, which will result in 78% indigenization after the upgrade

In a significant step towards bolstering its military might with indigenously developed technology, India is poised to witness its Russian-origin Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets evolve into a domestic platform. Speaking at a recent lecture.

The upgrade program is being led by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in partnership with the Indian Air Force and other partners. The upgrade is expected to cost US$7.5 billion.

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) granted Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for the upgrade. The upgrade is part of India’s efforts to improve the capabilities of its primary fighter aircraft, it refers to as the “Super Sukhoi”.

This initiative is a part of a larger effort by the Indian Air Force to modernize its ageing fleet. Air Chief Marshal Chaudhari asserted the critical role of an offensive air force as demonstrated in current global conflicts and emphasized India’s move towards an indigenized arsenal. To this end, the IAF has been proactive, from upgrading its Mirage 2000 to enhancing its MiG-29 fleet.

In summary, the IAF’s commitment to updating their combat forces with the latest technology, including shifting to fifth-generation fighter jets, ensures operational preparedness and a strong deterrence capability. The gradual indigenization of its air fleet marks a pivotal shift in India’s defence landscape, reducing dependency on foreign imports and fostering technological sovereignty.





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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace

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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace


According to unconfirmed reports, Armenia is a top contender for an export order for Akash SAM system manufactured by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).

While there is no official confirmation because of the sensitivities involved, documents suggest that the order for the same has already been placed the report further added.
There are nine countries, in turn, which have shown interest in the indigenously-developed Akash missile systems, which can intercept hostile aircraft, helicopters, drones and subsonic cruise missiles at a range of 25-km. They are Kenya, Philippines, Indonesia, UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Vietnam and Algeria reported TOI.

The Akash export version will also be slightly different from the one inducted by the armed forces. The 100-km range air-to-air Astra missiles, now entering production after successful trials from Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, also have “good export potential”, said sources.

Akash is a “tried, tested and successfully inducted systems”. Indian armed forces have ordered Akash systems worth Rs 24,000 crore over the years, and MoD inked a contract in Mar 2023 of over Rs 9,100 crores for improved Akash Weapon System

BDL is a government enterprise under the Ministry of Defence that was established in 1970. BDL manufactures surface-to-air missiles and delivers them to the Indian Army. BDL also offers its products for export.

Akash Weapon System

The AWS is a Short Range Surface to Air Missile (SRSAM) Air Defence System, indigenously designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). In order to meet aerial threats, two additional Regiments of AWS with Upgradation are being procured for Indian Army for the Northern borders. Improved AWS has Seeker Technology, Reduced Foot Print, 360° Engagement Capability and improved environmental parameters.

The project will give a boost to the Indian missile manufacturing industry in particular and the indigenous defence manufacturing ecosystem as a whole. The project has overall indigenous content of 82% which will be increased to 93% by 2026-27.

The induction of the improved AWS into the Indian Army will increase India’s self-reliance in Short Range Missile capability. This project will play a role in boosting the overall economy by avoiding outgo of precious foreign exchange to other countries, increasing employment avenues in India and encouraging Indian MSMEs through components manufacturing. Around 60% of the project cost will be awarded to the private industry, including MSMEs, in maintaining the supply chain of the weapon system, thereby creating large scale of direct and indirect employment.





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