Kenneth Juster, US ambassador to India, calls for strengthening of ties

Kenneth I Juster

Kenneth I Juster

Allaying fears of a probable change in the visa regulations that could affect around 750,000 Indian H-1B visa holders and could even lead to them being deported, American Ambassador Kenneth Juster assured on January 11 that the United States will continue to be a country of immigrants and that will not change. Accordingly, some companies are downgrading their operations there, while others are looking with great interest in alternative markets. It will increase economic interactions and volume of trade, lead to collaboration on emerging technologies and create jobs in both countries, he noted.

The Ambassador said the U.S. was keen to see India leading like-minded nations on a regional architecture to ensure that the Indo-Pacific region is increasingly a place of peace, stability, and growing prosperity, rather than one of disorder, conflict, and predatory economic policy.

"We seek to assist India's efforts to build up its indigenous defence base and capabilities, as well as enhance the inter-operability of our two forces as major defence partners in the Indo-Pacific region", he said. He said that President Trump's poll slogan "America First" and PM Modi's flagship initiative "Make in India" are not incompatible. The US envoy in particular emphasised on India's role in Indo-Pacific region and opportunities in economic partnership.

Bilateral trade has increased from approximately $ 20 billion in 2001 to $ 115 billion in 2016.

"We are concerned about persistent trade deficits, including the one we have with India". "We are working with partners to secure India's Nuclear Suppliers Group membership", he said.

"We want to promote respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, guarantee freedom of navigation overflight and commerce and other lawful uses of the sea, ensure territorial and maritime disputes are resolved peacefully consistent with worldwide laws", he added. "We are a country of immigrants& that has helped drive our economy, made us what we are, that is not going to change".

US Ambassador to India Kenneth I. Juster. Pakistan is also important to the situation in Afghanistan. While concentrating on the diplomatic relations between the two nations, he also said that the best example of the relationship might well be the Indian diaspora in the United States. He said that there are multiple ways to attain this, including military exercises, sale of military hardware and technology, military exchanges, and sharing of information on terrorism networks.

"We want to have a constructive relationship with the Chinese as well".

He said Mr. Trump's recent decision to suspend security aid to Pakistan came because Islamabad "has not done all it can to eliminate terrorist sanctuaries in Pakistan that are contributing to unrest in Afghanistan". "But if they engage in predatory economic policy and other things, there would be reactions".

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