US Ambassador’s Visit to the Vivekananda International Foundation
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The Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) hosted His Excellency Kenneth Juster, the United States Ambassador to India, on 31 August 2018. Dr. Arvind Gupta, Director VIF welcomed the Ambassador to the interaction that was attended by former diplomats, military officers and scholars. Coming as it did just a week before the US-India 2+2 Strategic Dialogue scheduled to be held in New Delhi on 6th September 2018, the conversation was about recent developments in India-US bilateral relations, the forthcoming 2+2 Dialogue and the road ahead.

Ambassador Juster started his address with a recap of the current state of US India relations which have come a long way since Former Prime Minister Late Mr Vajpayee saw the countries as ‘natural allies.’ The US now has placed India at the centre of its foreign policy priorities especially in South Asia and the Indo-Pacific. The positive momentum built over the past fifteen years has continued under the present Trump administration.

There is a broad convergence that despite the turbulence that has marked US foreign policy under the current administration, Indo-US relations have on the whole done well. The inaugural 2+2 meeting that will cover broad range of bilateral, regional and global issues of shared interest, with a view to strengthening strategic and security ties between the two countries, will further elevate the strategic partnership between the two democracies. There is a growing congruence on views about South Asia, the Indo-Pacific and China which offer greater opportunities for cooperation.

Despite recent concerns over tariff and trade barriers in recent weeks between the two countries, one cannot ignore the fact that the US is India’s largest trading partner and foreign investor. The US is also the biggest market for Indian goods. It was agreed that both should look for ways to further strengthen the economic and strategic partnership. Stakeholders in both countries remain hopeful that the world’s two largest democracies will be able to come to an agreement on trade and look at it through a more strategic, long-term perspective as a strong US-India relationship is beneficial for both countries.

Event Date 
August 31, 2018

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