Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Making a New Beginning

Indo-US Relations got a fillip with US President, Barack Obama’s visit to India as a guest at the Republic Day Parade
It was a historic moment for India when President of world’s strongest democracy, Barack Obama visited as the chief guest at the Republic Day parade on 26 January. Obama came with his wife Michelle on 25th and left on 27th  January, attending many other important meetings with the Government, CEOs of both the countries and a business meeting. On the eve of Republic Day,  Shri Pranab Mukherjee, President of India hosted a banquet in honour of the President of the United States of America and while welcoming him in the country, said:- “Excellency, you have made history thrice-over today by becoming the first U.S. President to grace our Republic Day celebration as the Guest of Honour; by being the first U.S. President to visit India twice while in office; and by holding a second Summit-level meeting in the shortest-ever time span of four months. These milestones make this a truly historical visit. While I am proud that we are creating history together, I am even more pleased that we are creating a brighter future together - for our two countries and the world. 
The relationship between India and the United States is a special one. It is special because it is a relationship forged in the hearts and minds of our two people, in the commercial ties between our two businesses, in the exchanges between our two scientists and engineers and in the enduring linkages between hundreds of our institutions. This is one relationship where the two Governments can rightfully take pride in acknowledging that they have successfully put in place a ‘Strategic Partnership’ simply by following the lead shown by their people! “
The three day visit of the US President has been considered very important in further enhancing the political and business relations between world’s two largest democracies. The first achievement was the agreement on nuclear deal. Highlight of the deal included the establishment of an insurance pool to cover nuclear operators and suppliers for up to $250 million in damages; a nonbinding legal memorandum asserting that Indian liability law is consistent with international norms; and a new system of reporting on the status of nuclear fuel and other materials supplied by the United States.
US President also pledged of $4 billion in investments and loans, seeking to release what he called the "untapped potential" of a business and strategic partnership between the world's largest democracies.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also issued a statement after bi-lateral discussions with American President on 25 January 2015.
He mentioned that the two nations are prepared to step forward firmly to accept the responsibility of this global partnership – for our two countries and for shaping the character of this century.
The promise and potential of this relationship has never been in doubt. This is a natural global partnership. It has become even more relevant in the digital age. It is needed even more in our world of far-reaching changes and widespread turmoil.
The success of this partnership is important for our progress and for advancing peace, stability and prosperity around the world. 
He thanked the US President for the civil nuclear agreement which he considered  the centrepiece of our transformed relationship, which demonstrated new trust. It also created new economic opportunities and expanded our option for clean energy.
He further said ,“In the course of the past four months, we have worked with a sense of purpose to move it forward. I am pleased that six years after we signed our bilateral agreement, we are moving towards commercial cooperation, consistent with our law, our international legal obligations, and technical and commercial viability.
President Obama has also assured India of strong U.S. efforts in support of India’s full membership of the four international export control regimes at the earliest.
The statement also mentioned ,“a strong and growing economic relationship is vital for the success of our strategic partnership. Economic growth in our two countries is becoming stronger. Our business climate is improving. This gives me great optimism about our economic ties.
In addition, we have established a number of effective bilateral mechanisms to identify opportunities and also help our businesses trade and invest more. 
We will also resume our dialogue on Bilateral Investment Treaty. We will also restart discussions on a Social Security Agreement that is so important for the hundreds of thousands of Indian professionals working in the United States.
“We will continue to deepen our collaboration in science, technology, innovation, agriculture, health, education and skills. These are central to the future of our two countries; and also give us an opportunity to help others around the world. Indeed, our strategic partnership will only be complete if we assume our responsibility to work together to promote development and connectivity in our vast region. President Obama and I agreed to pursue this goal with a sense of priority”, Said the statement.
The present visit is an opportune time for US companies to scale up their engagement with Indian businesses at home as well as through partnerships in India, leveraging economic multipliers that exist on both sides, an industry report from FICII had said. “To foster a positive investment environment further, a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) can provide confidence and protection to investors from any discriminatory measures,” the report by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and Ernst & Young said here Saturday.
It stated a total of 268 outbound acquisitions had been made by the Indian companies between October, 2012 and December, 2014, of which 71 were made in the US, with a cumulative disclosed value of $2.9 billion, despite global and domestic economic turbulence.
“The actual investment in the US would be even greater as the transaction value is available for only 22 transactions out of a total 71 deals. It is a matter of great pride that Indian companies are able to contribute to the US economy’s export and tax revenues, social security contributions, capital growth and productivity,” the report said.
The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi and the US President, Mr. Barack Obama at the India-US CEO Forum Meeting, in New Delhi on January 26, 2015. 
The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi addressing at the India-US Business Summit, in New Delhi on January 26, 2015. The US President, Mr. Barack Obama is also seen 
The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi and the US President, Mr. Barack Obama giving media statement, during the Joint Press Interaction, in New Delhi on January 25, 2015



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