Donald Trump India Visit: US President Donald Trump will be on his first state visit to India on February 24-25 on the invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Claiming that India has not treated the United States “very well” on the trade front, US President Donald Trump has indicated that a “very big” bilateral deal may not be signed before the American presidential election in November.
According to the government sources in Delhi, while a major trade agreement seems unlikely during Trump’s visit, India is likely to sign a deal to buy 24 multi-role anti-submarine helicopters from American defence giant Lockheed Martin.
In a statement announcing the India visit of the US President, White House Press secretary Stephanie Grisham had said, “During a phone call over the weekend, President Trump and Prime Minister Modi agreed the trip will further strengthen the US-India strategic partnership and highlight the strong and enduring bonds between the American and Indian people.”
What are the dates of Donald Trump’s India visit?
US President Donald Trump will be in India on February 24 and 25.
Which cities will Donald Trump visit?
Donald Trump will visit Ahmedabad and Delhi on his maiden state visit to India. On the first day of his two-day visit to India, Trump, along with First Lady Melania Trump, will be in Gujarat, PM Modi’s home state. They are expected to begin their tour by visiting Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad. As a reason behind Ahmedabad featuring on Trump’s itinerary list, the White House statement had mentioned, “It played an important role in Mahatma Gandhi’s life and leadership of the Indian independence movement.”
Later in the day, he will inaugurate Motera’s Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium, which is being billed as the largest stadium in the world. Trump, who is visiting India five months after PM Modi addressed the Indian diaspora in ‘Howdy Modi!’ event in Houston, is expected to share the stage with the prime minister in a similar event there. The event, named ‘Kem Chho Mr President’ (How are you Mr President) in sync with ‘Howdy Modi!’, will see Trump addressing an audience which will mostly comprise Gujarati diaspora and those having families in the US, mostly from the US, at the Motera cricket stadium.
On the second day, Trump is expected to visit Delhi where he is expected to wrap up issues related to trade and defence deals which he can showcase in his campaign.
Agra in Uttar Pradesh was also considered as one of the stops for President Trump, news agency PTI reported where he was likely to visit Taj Mahal. However, it has not been officially confirmed if he would visit Agra.
What can be expected from this trip?
After the visit was announced, Trump, hinting at a limited trade package said, “We want to do something. We’ll see. If we can make the right deal, we’ll do it.”
India is demanding exemption from high duties imposed by the US on certain steel and aluminum products, resumption of export benefits to certain domestic products under their Generalised System of Preferences, greater market access for its products from sectors, including agriculture, automobile, auto components and engineering.
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On the other hand, the US wants greater market access for its farm and manufacturing products, dairy items and medical devices and cut on import duties on some ICT products. The US has also raised concerns over the high trade deficit with India.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said both countries share a common commitment to “democracy and pluralism” and the visit will go a long way in further cementing India-US friendship. “India and USA share a common commitment to democracy and pluralism. Our nations are cooperating extensively on a wide range of issues. Robust friendship between our nations augurs well not only for our citizens but also for the entire world,” he added.
However, “fundamental” differences and India’s increasingly protectionist stance may make an agreement difficult to finalise between the two countries anytime soon, say experts.
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