Use Gitlab Cloud to store private m2 local repository

I have taken all the maven .m2 dependencies (local repository) and the configuration file in order to compile my Java application. These dependencies were stored in a private network on an internal server and cannot be accessed from the internet (Gitlab Cloud).

I want to compile the project in a Gitlab pipeline using these saved dependencies/repository. However, I don’t want to keep those dependencies in the same git repository as my application, or at least I don’t think it’s advisable.

My question is, how and where do you think these dependencies should be stored with access from Git? Is it a good idea to store it in packages & Registries within that project, or would this be just to store the artifact generated when making the build?