India and Russia on Tuesday extended their partnership in science and technology for another decade, signing a pact formalising an exchange mechanism to curb technology smuggling.
The Integrated Long Term Partnership (ILTP), a cornerstone of scientific collaboration between India and Russia for 20 years now, was extended by another decade under the pact signed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Dmitry Medvedev.
The two countries would also increase cooperation in space, including lunar exploration and human flights, a joint statement said. India is already utilising Russia's Global Navigation Satellite System. Cooperation in the energy sector continues.
But behind the veil of the typically dour joint statement, India and Russia also discussed how to use the ILTP and other tools of scientific cooperation to stop technology smuggling, sources told HT.
The long-term partner countries are setting up science and technology centres in the other. These centres are aimed at formalising a technology exchange regime, a source said.
The move comes amid concerns over cases of scientists lured into smuggling sensitive, cutting-edge technology.