Recent high level exchanges between India & US signal optimistic environment for businesses: Jaishankar
NEW DELHI : The constructive momentum in India-US relations as signified by recent high level exchanges between the two signals an optimistic environment for businesses of the two countries, Indian foreign minister S Jaishankar said on Thursday batting for stronger economic ties.
“At the end of the day, any relationship is only as strong as its economic foundation. You are all charged with strengthening that even in the normal course. But as we seek to come out of the pandemic with a more purposeful agenda of cooperation, your understanding and sentiments acquire an even greater value," Jaishankar said in a speech to the US-India Business Council. The minister addressed the session virtually.
Recalling Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US a fortnight ago, the minister said it had provided the opportunity for Modi to meet US president Joe Biden face to face for the first time besides enabling the leaders of the four Quad countries – US, India, Japan and Australia -- to meet in person also for the first time.
“Together, these two events provided an opportunity to not only refresh our ties but give them an updated relevance in a larger context," the minister said adding that India and the US were “focused on a relationship that has not only steadily expanded but is now consequential enough to be imbued with a bigger purpose."
Noting how ties had grown the past two decades – including in the defence arena with India now designated a “Major Defence Partner" of the US and the two countries sharing perspectives in “many of the big challenges of the day" including terrorism, pandemics and climate change, Jaishankar said that these changes “clearly" demonstrate “a very positive enabling environment."
“When polities have strong convergences, their economic energies tend to find partners much more readily," he said.
“Second, both India-US relations and the Quad speak of a newer and more collaborative era of our ties. We are seeing value in each other more clearly and with less constraints. Three, in an era where technology is increasingly connected with trust and supply chains with reliability, we are contemplating how best to take forward post-covid economic recovery," he said pointing out possible areas for collaboration for India and US businesses.
“In business as much as in strategy, we are endeavouring to overcome the hesitations of history. All of this has to be conducted keeping in mind the long-term future of our environment," the minister added.