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‘Growing convergence of strategic interests’: DM Rajnath Singh on India-US relations

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

New Delhi: India and the US have a growing convergence of strategic interests and both sides seek a resilient and rules-based international order that safeguards the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Thursday, April 21.

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The Defence Minister has highlighted that with the recent India-US ‘2 2’ dialogue and the fruitful conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Joe Biden, it has created the ground for a more ambitious and strategic engagement between the two sides.

Addressing the American Chamber of Commerce in India, he said both India and the US share a common vision of a free, open, inclusive and rules-based Indo-Pacific and Indian Ocean Region.

“We have a growing convergence of strategic interests as both countries seek a resilient, rules-based international order that safeguards sovereignty and territorial integrity, upholds democratic values and promotes peace and prosperity for all,” he said.

The defence minister also described the India-US economic engagement as one of the defining business relationships of the 21st century and said there has been a rebound in bilateral trade over the last year, surpassing USD 113 billion (one billion =10,000 lakhs) in goods.

“In the context of this increasing trade, the India-US Trade Policy Forum discussions to expand bilateral trade, remove market access barriers, and improve ease of business become increasingly important,” he said.

Additionally, Singh said the “defence pillar” of the US-India relationship is strong and growing. “It is built on foundational bilateral agreements, military to military engagements, cooperation in the enhancement of defence capabilities and now a new emphasis on co-development and co-production,” he said.

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“Of late, some of the US companies have expanded their local presence in partnership with Indian companies, producing in India, for India and for the world.However, we believe this is just a beginning,” Singh said.

The India-US ‘2 2’ dialogue had taken place in Washington on April 11. Defence Minister Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar held the dialogue with US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Antony J Blinken.

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