Trump keen on taking forward India-US relations
The Dollar Business Bureau
US President Donald Trump’s views of Indo-US relationship is very positive and is keen to take the bilateral relationship forward, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said, after he met the senior cabinet officials of the US government.
Speaking with the Indian reporters on the margins of the India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue, which was started during the ex-President Barack Obama-led administration, Jaishankar said: "Optimistic" about the continuation of the upward trajectory of the bilateral relationship. Overall, (the) sense was that the Administration has a very positive view of the relationship, positive view of India. We saw a lot of goodwill and a lot of interest in taking the relationship forward.”
The two countries are currently working on the nitty-gritty of the next India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue, to be held in India later this year. The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross will visit India to participate in the dialogue.
Jaishankar also lauded the Trump administration for envisaging extraordinarily the growth of this relationship. He also took his visit as an opportunity to explain to the US officials the tremendous progress that India and the US have made in taking their relationship forward over the last few years.
Jaishankar, in the company of Commerce Secretary Rita Teotia, is on a visit to the US to participate in strategic and commercial talks. They also held interactions with the US business delegates through the US-India Business Council.
His meeting with Commerce Secretary Ross saw an extensive discussion on bilateral trade and economic cooperation. They also promised to work bilaterally on issues of mutual interest.
"What we heard across the board in the Administration, whether it was business, security, defence cooperation, whether our engagement in the region or working together on international issues, overall a very positive sense of India as a partner," he said.
Jaishankar also pitched India’s high-potential market for the US investments, highlighting that India has achieved a very robust growth, which can translate into an increased cooperation on the economic front.
Meanwhile, Teotia asserted that Trump’s vision of the US and the world presents an enormous opportunity for the Indian organisations in the US.
Answering to a question on potential India-US Free Trade Agreement, Teotia said, "At this moment, I think, the focus of the administration would be in an immediate neighbourhood, NAFTA. At this point of time (there was) no such suggestion.”
Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Make in India mission and US President Trump’s Hire America and Buy America aims, Jaishankar said: “If there is a more robust growth in America, I don't see how it is to the detriment of India. In fact, it can offer opportunity. We heard a sense of appreciation today that American companies are investing more strongly in India as well as an invitation to Indian companies to come and invest here.”