United States Consul General Edgard D Kagan said Monday his country would not take part in the Vibrant Gujarat Summit, scheduled next month, till the unresolved trade issues between the two countries are settled.
Speaking to mediapersons in Vadodara, Kagan said, “From our standpoint in terms of focusing our resources, one of our critical resources, which is primarily our senior officials, we feel it is very difficult to put people away to take part in something like Vibrant Gujarat (Summit) when we have all these unresolved (trade) issues. We are clear with the Government of Gujarat as well as the Centre (Government of India) that while in principle we recognise that there is value inside Vibrant Gujarat (Summit) for us, it is important to have ultimate progress in the outstanding trade issues before we redirect our focus to be able to think about how we would participate in Vibrant Gujarat (Summit).”
He also said that the US government has “tremendous respect and appreciation for the Gujarat government” and the “actions it has taken over the years to address the investment climate issues”.
Kagan, who is on a two-day visit to Vadodara, emphasised that the US expects a more open market in India for American firms, and until the prolonged trade issues are resolved, they would not prioritise anything else. Kagan, however, acknowledged the “improving relations” between the two nations and said that the countries should work together in better ways.