Home Asia India-US Sign BECA At The Third 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in Delhi

India-US Sign BECA At The Third 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in Delhi

October 27, 2020: India and US signed the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-Spatial Cooperation (BECA) at the 2+2 ministerial dialogue. The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Defence Dr. Mark T Esper and India’s Defence Minister Shri Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister Shri S. Jaishankar participated in the dialogue. Both countries also signed an MoU for technical cooperation on earth sciences, an arrangement extending the arrangement on nuclear cooperation, an agreement on postal services, and an agreement on cooperation in Ayurveda and Cancer research.

In his opening remarks, Mr Jaishankar said, “at a time when it is particularly important to uphold a rules-based international order, the ability of India and the US to work closely in defence and foreign policy has a larger resonance. Together, we can make a real difference when it comes to regional and global challenges, whether it is in respecting territorial integrity, promoting maritime domain awareness, countering terrorism or ensuring prosperity.”

In the press statement after the dialogue, Mr Jaishankar highlighted the importance of Indo-Pacific. He said, “the Indo-Pacific region was a particular focus of our talks. We reiterated the importance of peace, stability and prosperity for all countries in this region.”

The US Secretary of Defence Dr. Mark T Esper said that the India-US partnership is more important than ever to ensure security, stability & prosperity of the region and the world. 

“US and India are taking steps to strengthen our cooperation against all manner of threats and not just those posed by Chinese Communist Party,” said Mr Pompeo. He also reiterated the US support for India’s permanent membership of UNSC.

The dialogue was held at a crucial juncture when India and US’ relations with China are unstable. India had already signed the two of the foundational agreements, LEMOA and COMCASA, with the US in 2016 and 2018 respectively. The recently signed BECA will allow India access to geospatial intelligence from the US military satellites.