NEW DELHI --- In a major fillip to bilateral relations, India and the UAE Tuesday signed a defense cooperation agreement which provides for export and import of weapons and coordination in security-related issues.
The agreement was signed by Defence Secretary Subir Dutta and UAE Ambassador here Saeed M Ali Al Shamsi a day after visiting Chief of UAE Armed Forces Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan agreed during talks with Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani to work on a long term, broad strategic dialogue and set up a joint business council to hike bilateral trade to 5 billion dollars.
Al Nahyan, the third son of UAE President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who is here on a three-day visit, met President A P J Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Defence Minister George Fernandes this morning. Besides Advani, he had held talks with External Affairs Minsiter Yashwant Sinha yesterday.
A Defence Ministry spokesman said the defense agreement provides for development of defense cooperation, import and export of arms and coordination in the fields of military training, military medical services, cultural and sports activities, environmental issues and pollution cause by military particularly at sea.
The two countries would also cooperate in defense industry, scientific research, humanitarian and peace keeping operations, he said.
The spokesman said the talks between Fernandes and Al Nahyan, who is leading a six-member delegation including Information and Culture Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, were held in very cordial atmosphere.