New Delhi: India and the Czech Republic are engaged in discussions to enhance their defence cooperation, capitalising on the shared experience of utilising Soviet and Russian-made defence platforms between the two nations.

The talks revolve around the possibility of Czech defence firms providing maintenance services, spare parts, and equipment to the Indian Army and Air Force.

Eliska Zigova, the Czech Republic's Ambassador to India, revealed that the discussions centre on leveraging the Czech Republic's extensive knowledge about Soviet weaponry, stemming from the erstwhile Czechoslovakia's cooperation with the Soviet Union's defence industry.

Czech companies have proposed to collaborate with India in maintaining spare parts and modernising common defence platforms.

The Czech government is keen to facilitate discussions between its intergovernmental defence cooperation agency and India's defence ministry to facilitate such cooperation.

The potential for this partnership has increased since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine in February 2022, which has posed challenges for Russia's defence industry, traditionally India's primary supplier.

Consequently, India has been diversifying its sources for defence equipment to reduce its dependence on Russia.

Both India and the Czech Republic have expressed mutual interest in enhancing security ties, with a commitment to encouraging cooperation in areas such as research and development, training, and innovative production solutions involving stakeholders from both countries.

During the India-Czechia Strategic Partnership on Innovation in January 2023, the two nations underlined the importance of innovations in defence and expressed satisfaction with existing connections among their entities in these areas.

(With Inputs From Agencies)