Trade is a challenge in India-US relationship: Envoy


WASHINGTON, Aug 7:Trade is one of the challenges in the relationship between India and the US, a top Indian envoy said, exuding confidence that the two nations will soon be able to reach conclusions that are mutually beneficial and satisfactory.

“One of the issues (challenges) is trade. As the US seeks to recalibrate its trading relationships with not just India but with countries across the globe, we are happy to engage in that effort,” Indian Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla said at The Heritage Foundation think-tank on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump during their meetings in Osaka, Japan, in June on the margins of the G-20 Summit directed their officials to address issues related to trade, Shringla noted.

Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer are expected to meet soon in this regard, the ambassador said without indicating the dates.

That meeting would “enable us to reach conclusions that are mutually beneficial and satisfactory, he said.

Observing that the two countries will have other issues like this as they go along, Shringla said, “I have no doubt that we have both the mechanisms and the required political will to address these issues.”

What is important that India-US is a strategic partnership and the momentum of that partnership has to be sustained, he asserted.

“It has to be seen in a long-term perspective and one that has the inerrant basis on which we can take this relationship forward,” Shringla said.

He asserted that this relationship should not be seen in a short-term perspective.

“We see it in a long-term perspective, not just four or five years hence, but 50 years down the line. What is our strategic partnership? Where would we end up? How do we cooperate?” the envoy said.

Obviously, the basic ingredients, the inherent factors that contribute to the relationship are there, which is essentially because both nations are strong democracies, Shringla said.

“We believe in rule of law. We share the same values, ideas and principles and this is what ensures that our relationship will move forward irrespective of some of the minor speed bumps that come along the way,” he said.

“We certainly see the relationship as one that should be seen in a long-term perspective and that many of these issues that may arise as you go along can be addressed and can be addressed effectively,” Shringla said. (PTI)