General Tomas Paiva’s Visit to Empower Brazil-India Defence Collaboration

Indian Army

New Delhi: The visit by Commander of Brazilian Army General Tomas Miguel Ribeiro Paiva is a significant milestone in the longstanding relationship between the armed forces of the two countries. Accompanied by an official delegation,  General Tomas Miguel Ribeiro Paiva is on a six day visit to India.

It is for the first time that Commander of the Brazilian Army has travelled to India and this visit comes ahead of the G20 Summit where the President of Brazil will be participating and will ceremonially take over the presidency of G20.

On his maiden visit to India, General Tomas called on General Manoj Pande, the Chief of the Army Staff on August 29 and they exchanged ideas and held constructive discussions on various contemporary issues.

Both sides also discussed issues pertaining to strengthening bilateral cooperation between the two armies.

He later called on General Anil Chauhan, the Chief of Defence Staff and interacted with Giridhar Aramane, the Defence Secretary. These discussions underscored the shared goals of enhancing defence cooperation and collaboration between the two nations. The Brazilian commander also engaged in interactions with senior officers at the Army Headquarters, facilitating the exchange of knowledge and ideas. These engagements exemplify the commitment to mutual growth and shared excellence in military best practices.

Earlier in the day General Tomas paid homage to the fallen heroes of the Indian Armed Forces at the National War Memorial on August 29. And this was followed by a ceremonial Guard of Honour.

On August 31, the Brazilian Army General is also slated to witness manoeuvre and firing of various weapon platforms at the Pokhran Field Firing Ranges, according to the itinerary. The firing will demonstrate the capabilities of weapon systems possessed by the Indian Army including indigenous weapon systems.

Underlining the deep- rooted bond between the armies of India and Brazil, the visit of General Tomas Miguel Mine Ribeiro Paiva will not only strengthen military cooperation but also reinforce the commitment of both nations to engage in collaborative security efforts, global peace and prosperity. The primary aim is to enhance the Brazil-India defence partnership, focusing on strategic alliances, technological advancements, and the shared goals of both countries in safeguarding their national sovereignty through cooperation.

Earlier this year at the LAAD (DefExpo) event, India’s Ministry of Defence showcased various defence platforms. Representatives from Defence Research and Development Organisation, Bharat Dynamics Ltd., Yantra India Ltd., Bharat Electronics, Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd., and the Indo-Russian joint venture BrahMos were present. Private sector was represented by Kanpur based MKU Ltd. In the month of May, a high level delegation led by Joint Secretary Anurag Bajpai was in the South American nation and had meetings with the top leadership in the Brazil’s Ministry of Defence. MDL officials had also visited Brazil and had meetings with the top Brazilian Navy officials. The focus was on identifying areas in the defence sector where the two countries can collaborate.

The delegation accompanying the Brazilian Army General will concentrate on missile systems like the Akash and Astra Missiles. They will also explore the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) ‘Tejas,’ the LCA mid-air refuelling system, and the WhAP platform. Apart from discussions in Delhi, the delegation will visit Hindustan Aeronautics and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

Brazil is keen on collaborating in areas such as aircraft manufacturing, satellite building, space control, electronic warfare, cyber defence, and the exchange of raw materials. To overcome challenges in establishing identical factories, both countries aim to leverage their strengths for a productive resource exchange while avoiding trade embargoes.

The Plan of Action for the Brazil-India strategic partnership was signed at the end of talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former President Jair Bolsonaro, who was the Chief Guest at the Republic Day Parade in 2020. The two countries have a multifaceted relationship which is based on values and a convergence of views on many global issues. Both countries are cooperating bilaterally and multilaterally at various fora’s including the United Nations, BRICS, IBSA, G20, and ISA.

At present, two Brazilian companies have joint venture in India. CBC of Brazil, the world’s second-largest ammunition manufacturer has joint venture with SSS Defence. Another joint venture is between Brazilian company Taurus Armas S.A. and Jindal Defence. The joint venture was inked in 2020 on the sidelines of the 1st Brazil–India Defence Industry Dialogue of the India-Brazil Business Forum (IBBF), which was organised by the Ministry of External Affairs and Indian industry chambers. The Jindal – Taurus joint venture company, set up at Hisar (Haryana) with equity participation from both in the equity ratio of 51:49 will manufacture small arms under Transfer of Technology from Taurus,  and in accordance with the Defence Procurement Procedures (DPP).

Meanwhile, the only Indian company present in Brazil is Kanpur based MKU Ltd. The company has been in Brazil for some years now and has executed defence contracts with Federal police, Military Police & Army.