United States sees India an alternative hub for business to China

Cheryl Sanders
January 13, 2018

The US is working "very closely" with global partners to secure India's Nuclear Suppliers Group membership, its envoy Kenneth Juster said on Thursday and hoped that New Delhi would join the Australia Group on chemical and biological weapons soon. We have a strong mutual interest in eliminating this threat to our societies. "India can seize the strategic opportunity - through trade and investment - to become an alternative hub for USA business in the Indo-Pacific region", he told an audience in New Delhi.

Pointing out that "America First" and "Make in India" are not incompatible, Juster said rather investing in each other's markets will be mutually beneficial. "We remain in close contact with India on this issue", Juster said while replying to questions.

U.S. ambassador to India Kenneth Juster on Thursday called for strengthening economic ties between the world's oldest and largest democracies, which he said, would result in greater U.S. commitment to India and the Indo-Pacific region and help iron out any major differences that may crop up between the two. "India and the USA have a stake in the security and stability of Afghanistan".

"We also expect in the very near future for India to join the Australia Group on chemical and biological weapons.

I don't think we are going to get stability and security in Afghanistan if Pakistan does not contribute positively to that".

Mr Juster said the United States would not tolerate any cross-border terrorism or safe havens, adding that security assistance had been suspended by the USA to Pakistan as they (Pakistan) were not doing enough to curb terror.

"Each of our countries has suffered horrific terrorist attacks and continues to be targeted".

"Pakistan is also important to situation in Afghanistan".

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. "A prominent example of this commitment was the Trump Administration's decision last June to approve the sale of the Sea Guardian Unmanned Aerial System, positioning India to be our first non-NATO partner or treaty ally to acquire this advanced platform", Juster said. "We are working with partners to secure India's Nuclear Suppliers Group membership", he said. "For India and the United States, the Indo-Pacific is vital to the security and prosperity of our people as well as others", Juster added. "Together we want to ensure a free and open region, where rule of law and democratic principles are reflected", he said.

On the issue of H-1B visas, Juster said while the U.S. continues to attract the largest number of immigrants into the country, it plans to address some of the "fundamental issues" into the various categories of their visa regime.

Juster informed that a number of United States companies have reported increasing difficulties in conducting business in the largest market in the region, China.

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