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India, NZ Navy chiefs discuss maritime cooperation


New Delhi, Feb 20 (IANS) Indian Navy chief, Admiral R. Hari Kumar and his visiting Royal New Zealand Navy counterpart, Rear Admiral David Proctor on Tuesday discussed maritime cooperation and sea operations-related engagements, a Navy statement said. During the interaction, the two chiefs discussed avenues to strengthen bilateral maritime cooperation, including increased operational engagements, training exchanges, and information sharing.Rear Admiral Proctor is also scheduled to participate in Indian Navy’s Flagship Exercise Milan 24 at Visakhapatnam and also undertake high level engagements at Western Naval Command.Maritime cooperation between the Indian and New Zealand navies has witnessed significant growth since the Indian Navy chief’s visit to New Zealand in October 22, when the Technical Arrangement on White Shipping Information Exchange was concluded.Further, warships from both navies have been making regular port calls at each other’s ports, last being port calls by INS Kolkata and INS Sahyadri at Auckland and Wellington in September last year.The Indian Navy ships also conducted PASSEX with the Royal New Zealand Navy and Air Force in the Tasman Sea post departure, official added.Rear Admiral Proctor is on an official visit to India from February 19-27. He was welcomed with the customary Guard of Honour on the South Block lawns here.–IANSgcb/vd

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