New Delhi: Amid fast-growing maritime cooperation between the navies of India and the US, American Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Michael Richardson on Monday met top Indian military leadership to further enhance their bilateral military ties.

"His visit is intended to consolidate bilateral naval relations between India and USA and also to explore new avenues for naval cooperation," Naval spokesperson Captain DK Sharma said.

Admiral John M Richardson held discussions with Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chairman of COSC and Chief of the Naval Staff and Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa.

"He also interacted with Defence Secretary, Vice Chief of the Army Staff, Chief of the Integrated Defence Staff to the Chairman COSC and the National Security Council Secretariat," officials said.

Indian Navy and US Navy interact regularly at bilateral and multilateral forums and participate in maritime exercises such as MALABAR and RIMPAC. Regular 'Subject Matter Expert' exchange also takes place between both the navies to institutionalise interoperability in various fields.

After being accorded major defence partner status by the US in 2016, India -US ties have grown significantly in recent years.

The inaugural Ministerial 2+2 Dialogue conducted in September 2018 also facilitated new avenues for defence cooperation between the two countries.

Major issues discussed during the visit included operations and exercises, training interactions, information exchange, capacity building, and capability enhancement.