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Dynamism in India-U.S. ties


The trajectory of India-U.S. bilateral ties continues to go up – however, while there are regular interactions among officials at various levels and across sectors, as well as people-to-people engagement, there are no formal interactions between Members of Parliament in India and members of the U.S. Congress.


GS-II: International Relations (Foreign Policies affecting India’s Interests)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. U.S.-India relations
  2. Economic Relations between India and the U.S.
  3. International Cooperation between India and U.S.
  4. Dynamism in India-US Ties:
  5. Way Forward

U.S.-India relations

  • The U.S.-India partnership is founded on a shared commitment to freedom, democratic principles, equal treatment of all citizens, human rights, and the rule of law.
  • The United States and India have shared interests in promoting global security, stability, and economic prosperity through trade, investment, and connectivity.
  • The United States supports India’s emergence as a leading global power and vital partner in efforts to ensure that the Indo-Pacific is a region of peace, stability, and growing prosperity.
  • The strong people-to-people ties between our countries, reflected in a four million-strong Indian American diaspora, are a tremendous source of strength for the partnership.
  • In December 2019, the United States hosted the second 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in Washington led by the U.S. Secretaries of State and Defense and their Indian counterparts, at which both sides reaffirmed India’s status as a Major Defense Partner and deepened cooperation on maritime security, interoperability, and information sharing.
  • While the 2+2 serves as the premier dialogue mechanism between the United States and India, there are more than thirty bilateral dialogues and working groups, which span all aspects of human endeavor, from space and health cooperation to energy and high technology trade.
  • These include the U.S.-India Counterterrorism Joint Working Group, which was established in 2000 and is among our oldest government to government dialogues, as well as the Strategic Energy Partnership, Cyber Dialogue, Civil Space Working Group, Trade Policy Forum, Defense Policy Group and many more.

Economic Relations between India and the U.S.

  • The United States seeks an expanded trade relationship with India that is reciprocal and fair.
  • In 2019, overall U.S.-India bilateral trade in goods and services reached $149 billion. U.S. energy exports are an important area of growth in the trade relationship.
  • In 2018 India purchased 48.2 million barrels of U.S. crude oil, a significant increase from 9.6 million in 2017.
  • In 2020, Indian students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities contributed over $8 billion to the U.S. economy. The total number of Indian students in the United States has more than doubled over the last decade, from 81,000 in 2008 to a record high of 202,000 in 2019.

International Cooperation between India and U.S.

  • India and the United States cooperate closely at multilateral organizations, including the United Nations, G-20, Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization.
  • The United States welcomes India joining the UN Security Council in 2021 for a two-year term, and supports a reformed UN Security Council that includes India as a permanent member.
  • India is an ASEAN dialogue partner, an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development partner, and an observer to the Organization of American States.
  • India is also a member of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), at which the United States is a dialogue partner. In 2019, the United States joined India’s Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure to expand cooperation on sustainable infrastructure in the Indo-Pacific region.

Dynamism in India-US Ties:

  • In essence, the bilateral dynamic between India and the United States is unusual in that it is based on both strategic and commercial interests.
  • With regions and cities becoming individual markets requiring specific solutions, state-state and city-city collaboration could be the way forward.
  • The United States’ alignment with India’s Blue Economy goals opens up a wide range of collaboration prospects, including all types of energy, technology, and infrastructure required to achieve this aim.
  • With enormous natural resources and an untapped target population, the Indo-Pacific region offers tremendous synergies for both countries to promote a market-driven Blue Economy framework for growth and development.
  • Grid modernization, energy efficiency, and renewable technology are all clear potential areas that are becoming more tangible every day.

Way Forward

  • India, the world’s most populous democracy, is dedicated to representative government and the rule of law.
  • The alliance between the United States and India is built on common ideals such as democracy, pluralism, and the rule of law.
  • A slew of economic, security, and geopolitical initiatives are in the works, including groundbreaking ideas for civilian nuclear cooperation.
  • The increasing convergence of strategic interests between India and the U.S. would promote global peace and stability.

-Source: The Hindu

December 2023