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US will continue to foster stronger defence partnership with India: Pentagon

WASHINGTON (PTI): The United States will continue to foster a stronger defence partnership with India, the Pentagon said on Friday.

"We very much appreciate our relationship with India on a defence level. We continue to foster a stronger defence partnership with India and that is something that I think you'll continue to see us do going forward," Pentagon Press Secretary Pat Ryder told reporters at a news conference here.

In 1997, defence trade between India and the US was almost negligible, today it stands above USD 20 billion.

Responding to a question, Ryder said China remains the "pacing challenge" for the Department of Defense.

"We do appreciate the partnership that we have with India and other countries in the Indo-Pacific region when it comes to preserving individual nations' sovereignty and abiding by the international rules-based order that has preserved peace and stability for many years," he said.

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