Defence key pillar of India-Czech ties: Kovind

New Delhi: Defence cooperation is a key pillar of ties between India and the Czech Republic, President Ram Nath Kovind said on Saturday when Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis called on him here.

“The President said that along with an economic partnership, defence is a key pillar of India-Czech bilateral relations,” the Rashtrapati Bhavan said in a statement.

“He expressed hope that the two countries will move forward from a traditional buyer-seller relationship to one where we can co-develop and co-produce defence equipment,” it stated.

Babis called on the President after a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the Vibrant Gujarat Summit in Gandhinagar on Friday.

During that meting, Modi invited Czech companies to take advantage of huge opportunities that the Indian market offered for manufacturing in India, especially in defence, automotive and railway sectors.

On his part, Babis invited nomination of an Indian scientist for its prestigious Research and Development Council which hosts several international researchers of high repute and is headed by himself.