U.S.–India space cooperation
An Indian view
in The future of U.S.–India security cooperation
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U.S.–India relations have seen transformative shifts in the two decades 2000–20. The rise of China and the strategic implications of this on the two countries have been key to this transformation. This has had its impact on U.S.–India space cooperation as well. Though the two countries have about five decades of cooperation in space, with a gap in the 1980s and 1990s, the relationship is yet to develop its full potential. The relationship can scale to greater heights if there is a determined and pragmatic approach to space cooperation in both Washington and New Delhi, especially between the two space agencies. Given the China factor and the larger strategic uncertainties in the Indo-Pacific, there is an increased likelihood of Washington and New Delhi working together on all aspects of space cooperation, including in the military space domain. There are also concerns about possible security implications of growing Russia–China collaboration in the space sector, which could also drive India and the U.S. a lot closer in the coming years. Despite these mutual concerns, cooperation between the two countries has not been easy due to some of the lingering after-effects of Indian anger at U.S. technology-denial regimes. These have hampered the prospects of building a strong and dynamic partnership. The chapter concludes by identifying a few pragmatic steps to remove some those hurdles and promote a strong space collaboration agenda between India and the United States.


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