Busy schedule awaits the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to USA

By Ravi R Ponangi
Atlanta, GA: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a visit to the United States from September 22. During the visit, Prime Minister would be participating in the Leaders’ Summit of the Quadrilateral Framework (QUAD) in Washington D.C. on September 24. Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan and President Joseph R. Biden of USA will also attend the summit. The Leaders will review progress made and discuss regional issues of shared interest. They will review the Quad Vaccine initiative which was announced in March this year and also exchange views on contemporary global issues such as critical and emerging technologies, connectivity and infrastructure, cyber security, maritime security, humanitarian assistance / disaster relief, climate change and education.
Prime Minister is scheduled to address the General Debate of the High-Level Segment of the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on September 25 in New York. The theme for this year’s General Debate is ‘Building Resilience through hope to recover from COVID-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to the needs of the Planet, respect people’s rights & revitalize the United Nations. PM’s speech at UNGA is probably one of the most awaited among world leaders.
President Biden will host Prime Minister Modi for a bilateral meeting at the White House on September 24, after the QUAD leaders’ meeting. During the meeting, a range of issues including the security situation in Afghanistan post-US departure are likely to be discussed.
The Summit would provide a valuable opportunity for dialogue and interactions among the Leaders, anchored in their shared vision of ensuring a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

Glimpses of India-US Partnership:

Rapidly expanding trade and commercial linkages between India and US form an important component of the multi-faceted partnership between the two countries.
USA is our 2nd largest trading partner, consistently we are achieving double digit growth year-on-year. Due to COVID-19, there was dip in the bilateral trade. Now, again it is poised to surge back.
Bilateral trade stood at $150 billion dollars in 2019, $ 142 billion in 2018, $ 126 billion in 2017, $ 114 billion in 2016.
India’s export to US comprises of – Precious stones, pharmaceuticals, mineral fuels; India’ imports from US are: Aircrafts, Nuclear Reactors and boilers, Mineral fuels, Fertilizers and agriculture products.

  • Over 2000 American companies have presence in India.
  • Every US State exports to India and these exports support more than 260,000 jobs directly and indirectly.
  • All major US conglomerates have significant presence in India like Amazon, Uber, Microsoft, Walmart etc. All are growing at rapid pace in India.
  • From US to India about $40 billion plus investment -The US is 6th largest source of foreign direct investment into India. During COVID- 19 we have seen $ 20 billion FDI from USA
  • India investments in USA have significantly increased in recent years. Indian companies have presence in all 50 US states, with tangible investments in 40 states.
  • Over 200 Indian companies are doing business in USA and have created over 125,000 jobs.
  • India has invested over $ 20 billion plus in USA

US offers advantage of cutting-edge technology in various fields whereas India complements by offering skilled manpower.
Key aspects of bilateral engagements in other sectors

Defense relationship has emerged as a major pillar of India-US strategic partnership with intensification of defense trade, joint exercises, personal exchanges, maritime security, and counter-piracy.

  • Defense acquisition from US defense has crossed over US $ 21 billion.
  • Foreign and Defense Ministers have met thrice in the 2+2 format.
  • US has recognized India as ‘major defense partner’ in 2016
  • There is growing and increasingly sophisticated cooperation between the two Navies – the continued high level of operational interaction achieved in the MALABAR naval exercise.
  • There is establishment of the new tri-service, amphibious exercise – TIGER TRIUMPH – as a tangible demonstration of the growing scope and complexity of military cooperation.
  • Defense Technology and Trade Initiative, aimed at promoting co-development and co-production efforts, is working well.


  • Partnership is increasingly getting diversified across both conventional and renewable energy sources
  • India has commenced purchase of US-origin oil and LNG
  • There is growing exports of U.S. LNG, crude oil, and other energy products to India, totaling over $9 billion to date.
  • Last four years, we have seen export of US LNG related sports to the tune $20 billion

Science and Technology, Space:

  • There are more than 200 research projects funded by National Institute of Health/NIH of US. Due to this we have created, huge knowledge network of scientists and researchers who are collaborating on diverse projects.
  • Conclusion of a new Science and Technology (S&T) Agreement in September 2019 will further strengthen collaboration on science and technology, particle research, and innovation.
  • Both countries have developed Rotavirus. Collaboration continues vis-à-vis Malaria, TB, Influenza vaccine. Bilateral institutions are jointly working on COVID vaccine too.
  • Gilead has collaborated with 7 Indian companies to manufacture Remdesivir which will cost $72. – 6 days injectable course will be around $432.

India and United States enjoy a comprehensive global strategic partnership covering almost all areas of human endeavor, driven by shared democratic values, convergence of interests on a range of issues, and vibrant people-to-people contacts.
Regular exchanges at the leadership-level have been an integral element of the expanding bilateral engagement. The outcomes emerging from these visits have been instrumental in further strengthening the multifaceted ties between the two countries.
Since assuming office in May 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has visited the U.S. a few times (September 2014, September 2015, March-April 2016, June 2016, June 2017 and September 2019). Prime Minister Modi last visited the US in 2019 when he attended United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). He also travelled to Houston, where he attended the ‘Howdy, Modi!’ event organized in his honor by Indian diaspora there. During ‘Howdy, Modi!’ event, he and then President Donald Trump addressed a huge diaspora event in Houston. Prime Minister Modi and Trump spoke of strengthened ties between India-US.
President Obama paid a State visit to India in January 2015 and participated in the Republic Day celebrations as the Chief Guest.
President Donald J. Trump paid a 2-day State Visit to India from February 24-25, 2020.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on November 17, 2020 to congratulate him on his victory in the U.S. Presidential elections. They held a telephone conversation on February 8, 2021 and reiterated their commitment to consolidating bilateral strategic partnership. The two leaders also held a telephone conversation on April 26, 2021 committing to work closely together in the fight against COVID-19. PM Modi spoke to Vice-President Kamala Harris in June 2021. PM Modi participated in the Quad Leaders’ Virtual Summit on March 12 2021, and Leaders’ Summit on Climate April 22-23, convened by President Biden.
The India-US relations enjoy strong bipartisan support in the US Congress. The ‘India Caucus’ in the US Congress comprising of the Senate Indian Caucus and the House Caucus on India and Indian Americans is the largest single country Caucus in the US Congress with over 150 members. The Senate India Caucus is led by Senators Mark Warner (D-VA) and John Cornyn (R-TX) and in the House of Representatives, it is led by Congressmen Brad Sherman (D-CA), Steve Chabot (R-OH), Ro Khanna (DCA) and Michael Waltz (R-FL). The Caucus regularly meets to discuss important issues related to the India- US relations and recently, led a resolution in the House of Representatives titled “Urging the Administration to facilitate assistance in response to the devastating impact of COVID–19 in India.” This bipartisan resolution was passed in the House of Representatives in a unanimous vote reflecting the strong support for India on both sides of the aisle.
The Summit would provide a valuable opportunity for dialogue and interactions among the Leaders, anchored in their shared vision of ensuring a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

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