India, US have to work intently to compete with China: Biswal

KV Prasad

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 25

Advocating a stronger push for increased bilateral engagement between the United States and India, a senior US policy specialist on Friday said geo-political ambitions of New Delhi and Washington need to be paired for a strategy to engage emerging realities of the Indo-Pacific.

“With the incoming Biden-Harris administration, there will be a renewed focus on restoring our global alliances. Besides, the advances of the past four years and the strategic convergence which we have seen deepened in the current administration will continue, but they need to be buttressed with broader focus on our shared democratic values,” President of the US-India Business Council Nisha Biswal said, addressing the inaugural Atal Bihari Memorial Lecture organised by the Ministry of External Affairs.

‘Vajpayee Was Titan Of His Times’

Atalji was a titan of his times who left an indelible stamp on many of India’s policies. His vision of India-US cooperation has been advanced, particularly in recent years. —S Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister

“Our geopolitical ambitions need to be paired with a firm grasp and strategy for engaging the geo-economic realities of the Indo-Pacific,”

Recounting the upward trajectory of the relationship since the time Vajpayee was at the helm of affairs, she said Vajpayee was able to foresee what many others failed to see. He saw the potential dangers posed by a rising and unchecked China. And he saw the importance of US-India partnership.

Today, she said the geo-economics realities were such that for either the US to succeed and be competitive with the production capacity and efficiency of China would require working together by both countries and develop more effective and efficient economy in respective countries.

Biswal, who served in the Obama administration, said today the two large economies — the US and India — are outside two major trading blocks in Asia and trade policy in democracies are neither easy nor politically popular.

“Despite the fact that we have not been able to conclude even a small agreement between the two countries, we have seen the promise of a growing economic partnership drive greater trade and investment in both US and India,” she suggested.

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