Indo-US ties are so broad and dynamic that pulling back on any aspect will not be in the interest of anyone, a top American official has said while observing that the next administration may want to add their own new areas of focus in the bilateral relationship.
“India-US relations will have to move beyond government to government. India-US relations are global, but they should also be local,” Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal told a Washington audience. Speaking on the occasion of launch of “US-India State and Urban Initiative” by Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a top American think-tank, Biswal stressed on building state to state relationships.
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“Every successive administration is going to add some new areas of cooperation. The US-India relations are so broad, so complex, and so dynamic that pulling back on any aspect will not be in the interest of anyone,” Biswal said. “The next administration will understand that, and might want to build on, and might want to add their own new areas of focus. That doesn’t mean that they will move away from what has already been built,” Biswal said in response to a question.
“The demand in India for new technologies and capital is high, and the desire in many places in the US to seek new areas of partnership with India is also high,” she said pointing out that India-US economic ties are responding to demands that already exist.
Amos J Hochstein, Special Envoy in the State Department’s Bureau of Energy Resources, said India and the US are working together on addressing regulatory issues. “The issues are plenty. Steady goals are extremely important to set the direction of where the country is going. But beyond setting the goals, there have to be follow ups. You can’t simply say that I am going to create 175 GW of renewable energy if you cannot solve some of the fundamental problems that do not allow that to happen,” he said.
“India is the best place in the world to invest in renewable energy. But the regulatory environment and all the issues related to financing will have to be resolved for that to happen,” he asserted.
“Just like the US where the regulatory authority of the federal government is rather limited…the states in the US have all the power. They will decide the future of their own state. The same is true in India. In addition to what central government is doing, what is happening at the state and local levels are also very important,” Hochstein said.