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Foreign Secretary to embark on six-day US visit

Last Updated: Tuesday, March 9, 2010 - 00:01

Washington: Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao
would travel to the United States next week to hold
discussions with top officials of the Obama Administration on
a wide range of bi-lateral and regional issues.

Rao would be visiting Washington and New York during her
stay here from March 14 to 19. She will be co-chairing the
seventh meeting of the India’US High Technology Cooperation
Group (HTCG) with Dennis F Hightower, Deputy Secretary of
Commerce on March 15-16.

This is the first meeting of the HTCG after the new
administration assumed office in the US. Both sides hope to
consolidate the progress made in the last five years and move
ahead to significantly expand bilateral trade in strategic and
high technology areas, the spokesperson of the Indian mission
here said.

The HTCG was formed in 2002 to provide a forum to discuss
bilateral high-technology trade issues and build the
confidence necessary to facilitate trade in sensitive items.

On March 15, the US-India Business Council (USIBC) will
host the industry dialogue in Washington, organised in
partnership with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)
and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry
(FICCI).

The meeting will give US and Indian industry
representatives an opportunity to discuss ways in which the
two governments can facilitate trade in specific industry
sectors and make suggestions. These industry suggestions are
expected to provide substantive input for bilateral government
meetings slated in the following day.

Apart from meetings in the Commerce Department, the
Foreign Secretary will also be meeting senior members of the
US Administration as well as the US Congress during her stay
in Washington, the spokesperson said.

India and the US had agreed on establishing a Strategic
Dialogue to be co-chaired by the External Affairs Minister and
the US Secretary of State and also a revised Dialogue
Architecture last year during the visit of Hillary Clinton to
India.

Rao in her meetings in the State Department will review
the progress made on various elements of the revised dialogue
architecture and also discuss the way ahead in preparation for
the visit of External Affairs Minister S M Krishna to the US
later this year for the next round of Strategic Dialogue.
Regional and global issues of mutual interest would also
figure in these talks, the official said.

PTI

First Published: Tuesday, March 9, 2010 - 00:01

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