entrepreneurship, which is very manifest
And, it’s a win-win for both economies
and I am confident that as India continues
to take steps to open its economy, to create
greater efficiency in its economy and
greater transparency, that the American
companies will be investing in much
If you look at what we are already doing
— we have $28 billion in American investment in India — I can see that growing
and scaling rapidly based on the economic
growth and the enabling environment that
India is seeking to bring about.
In terms of Prime Minister Modi’s foreign
policy outreach, as expected his first visit
was to Japan and it was highly successful
going by all accounts. Then the Australian
Prime Minister and the Chinese President
So, in some ways, in spite of the very
intensive summer where US officials were
concerned — Secretary Kerry going out
there with Secretary (of Commerce Penny)
Pritzker followed by Secretary Hagel — the
US seems to be way down in the pecking
order and it seems to be like a pretty strategic move by Prime Minister Modi in terms
of where his foreign policy priorities lie.
First of all, it’s not a race to see who can
have what meeting first and who can have
what visit first.
I really do think that as the prime minister has sought to engage the region, that is
something that we have welcomed. We
believe that he is doing exactly the right
thing for India to strengthen relationships
across the region and in the neighborhood
and across Asia.
We think that that’s a good thing,
because we see Asia as playing an increasingly important role in driving global economic growth and certainly our own rebalance to Asia is
founded on the understanding that America’s prosperity
and America’s security is increasingly in the coming years
and decades going to be impacted by the prosperity and
the security of Asia.
So, we are deeply intertwined and invested in each
And, within the Asian landscape, India’s rise, India’s
growth, is going to be a major part of the story.
So, one, we want India to have strong ties and relations
within Asia, and two, we are committed to playing an
important role in partnering with India and being part of
that Asian story as it unfolds.
With regard to India pulling the rug under the World
Trade Organization vis-à-vis the Trade Facilitation
Agreement, wasn’t it embarrassing that at the same time
that Secretary Kerry and Pritzker were in Delhi, India says
no to the WTO?
We had a lot of conversations at the time and since then,
throughout the summer, about the WTO and the failure
of TFA implementation to move forward.
As Secretary Kerry pointed out at the time, we deeply
understand and are empathetic with India’s concerns
on food security. We understand how important this
issue is for India.
At the same time, we are concerned that an international agreement that was reached in Bali would be undermined at this critical juncture when we are at the point of
implementing the Trade Facilitation Agreement, which
will benefit all developing economies, including India’s.
So, our hope is that we can find a way for India to be
able to allow TFA implementation to move forward — it is
a consensus agreement and does require that consensus to
We don’t want India to be an outlier — we want India to
be part of the solution. And, we welcome the opportunity
to better understand, to better support, India’s efforts
around its food security concerns.
So, we hope that we can find a way forward.
The world is watching India and assessing India’s reliability as a partner in these multilateral fora, in these
regional and global and regional agreements, and so, we
hope that India will send the right signals and we are willing to sit down and work with them to find a way forward.
Senator (John) McCain, in a major speech recently at
Carnegie on Strengthening US-India Relations, in terms
of countering and combating international terrorism,
asked people to imagine if India being a part of the coalition in the fight against ISIS or ISIL. Does the US like to
co-opt India as a partner in the coalition against the
We have many shared challenges and shared goals and
we certainly have for example, shared interests on security. Our counterterrorism cooperation became more intensified and robust after the Mumbai attacks, which
brought home to both countries — both societies — the
need for us to be able to work together to counter these
kinds of challenges.
So, we look forward to continue to work very closely
with India on those kinds of threats — whether you define
the threat as Al Qaeda on the Indian subcontinent, or you
define that threat as other terrorist groups and extremist
ideologies, we know that we will continue to work together and share information and intelligence to boost capabilities where we can and to track those individuals and
organizations that pose a threat to both our countries and
both of our peoples.
But whether that comes together in some concrete man-
ifestation in terms of ISIL, it’s too early to tell.
But it’s clear that the body of work that we are engaging
in is going to advance our efforts for both countries to be
able to manage and mitigate against these kinds of threats
and to provide greater security for our people and our
institutions and our interests at home and abroad.
Because the threat that India faces and the threat the
United States faces is not just to the homeland but to our
people and to our institutions wherever they may be.
India has been on Russia’s corner with regard to
Moscow’s actions in Ukraine and in the annexation of
Crimea. Isn’t this a potential irritant for US-India ties?
The US has always called for and has been pushing
India to be a regional player, a global player, and consid-
ering India’s close ties with Russia, will the US try to use
India’s good offices to convince Moscow to accept
(Ukraine President) Petroshenko’s proposals to allevi-
ate the crisis in Ukraine?
I would just say that we deeply respect that India has
its own history, its own relationships and its own perspective. And, we have not pressured and nor will we do
so for India to particularly take certain positions on certain issues.
But what we will do and what we continue to do is to
share our analysis, our perspectives to better inform our
Indian friends on how we view the situation and the concerns that we have.
And, as we work bilaterally and internationally to bring
greater understanding and awareness and convergence on
our issues, that naturally speaking we will start to see over
time that our views, our policies, will start to reflect that
bilaterally and around the world.
But, I would say that this is not an issue that we particularly put forward as a litmus test in the relationship.
Secretary of State John Kerry with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi, August 1. LUCAS JACKSON/REU TERS
‘This is a visit that the President
has been anticipating’