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PH and India Joint Defense Cooperation Committee Meets in New Delhi

Fundamental challenges remain but the magnitude, complexity, urgency and interlinking of issues have made things more challenging. This was the shared sense of the PH and Indian sides during their bilateral Joint Defense Cooperation Committee meeting held in New Delhi, India on March 24. 

Convening for the 2nd time, the JDCC afforded the two delegations with an opportunity to exchange views on regional security challenges with the Indian side sharing its threat based capability driven approach to defense planning and the PH side stressing that the pursuit of an independent foreign policy has accorded the defense department with an opportunity to engage a wider set of regional partners.

The PH side also shared the DND’s thrust to streamline and rationalize structures, processes and activities relative to the ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (ADMM) and ADMM-Plus, which it chairs in 2017. India is a part of the ADMM-Plus and has conveyed its support for such advocacy by the PH defense establishment.

The meeting reviewed the status of the implementation of bilateral activities since the JDCC last met in 2012 arriving at a common thrust to ensure that PH-India defense relations become more robust. Relatedly, the meeting explored prospects of having intelligence analyst-to-analyst exchanges, increased cooperation in maritime security and defense industry cooperation. The Indian side is keen in contributing to the PH defense capability building efforts as well as working with other PH agencies to promote maritime domain awareness.

The PH side conveyed that the PH is open to working with partners and shared that inter-agency work related to maritime security is best handled by the National Coast Watch Council, with the suggestion that it may be productive for the Indian side to collaborate with the NCWC. Co-chairing the meeting were PH ASEC for Assessments and International Affairs Raymund Jose G. Quilop and the India’s Joint Secretary Shambu S. Kumaran.