Manjit Kishore ( )
India and Israel recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on industrial research and development cooperation, fortifying their ties through collaborations in several domains, including innovation, startups, and technology.
During a high-level meeting held in New Delhi, an Israeli delegation led by Brig Gen (Ret) Daniel Gold, Head of DDR&D, Israeli Ministry of Defence met with Jitendra Singh, MoS for Science, Technology, and Earth Sciences, to talk about collaboration across sectors, including aerospace, electronics instrumentation, civil infrastructure and engineering, energy and energy devices, agri, nutrition and biotech, and healthcare.
The agreement was signed between Israel’s DDR&D and its Indian counterpart Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to strengthen each other’s domestic industrial sectors and export their joint developments to other countries.
Singh emphasised that India and Israel have bilateral consultation channels in all areas of cooperation, such as water, agriculture, counter-terrorism, and defence, noting that some progress has already happened in the healthcare sector. The defence sector has been a particular priority for cooperation with Israel, and in November 2021, the Defence R&D Organisation (DRDO) and DDR&D signed a Bilateral Innovation Agreement to promote innovation and accelerated R&D in the startup ecosystems and MSMEs of both countries for the development of dual-use technologies.
The union minister also expressed hope that the deal will usher in a new era in India-Israel relations, notably in the areas of innovation, technology, and startups. He also stated that 2023 will be a key year for India as it celebrates 30 years of diplomatic relations with Israel, and holds the G20 presidency under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership.
Gold also noted that India and Israel have a lot of potential for collaboration in high-tech fields.
Not only are the two countries bilateral partners, but they also play a larger role in addressing challenges in the sectors of water, energy, transportation, space, health, and food security through the “I2U2” Group, which includes India, Israel, the UAE, and the US.
To foster a startup-friendly environment, India has launched many programmes, including the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (Self-Reliant India Movement), Startup India, and Digital India.