Washington: US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should move forward on an achievable agenda to further enhance the Indo-US ties, a prominent American think-tank said on Tuesday.
In its recommendation ahead of the India US Strategic Dialogue, Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI) asked Washington to consolidate counterterrorism efforts with New Delhi in order to better coordinate against emerging threats.
It also suggested the US to conclude negotiations for a Bilateral Investment Treaty, as part of a long-term strategy towards a US-India free-trade agreement, to expand investment opportunities for businesses in both countries.
Its four point recommendation include bolstering military-to-military cooperation by expanding and intensifying joint training opportunities, particularly in the area of maritime security, and by increasing the number of base visits for the US Navy and encourage India to expand cooperation with existing US allies and partners to promote Washington and New Delhi’s increasingly-aligned regional interests and values.
Ties between the United States-India have progressed dramatically over the past decade, as the two nations now cooperate on a wide range of regional, global, and economic issues, FPI concluded in a policy paper issued today.
Moving forward, the Obama administration has correctly noted that India will play a greater and positive role in the Asia-Pacific.
"However, in order to achieve a more robust and cooperative partnership, leaders in Washington and New Delhi must continue to move this relationship forward. India must address US concerns regarding liability reforms related to the 2008 civilian nuclear agreement, a critical obstacle to further bilateral progress," it said.
"As leaders from both nations meet in Washington for the third annual Strategic Dialogue, the Obama administration should thus seek to expand cooperation not only in the long term, but also in the near term through achievable initiatives and strategic goals," the FPI said.
Noting that the Strategic Dialogue provides an important opportunity to further strengthen "long-term strategic partnership", the FPI said yet despite the Obama administration`s desire to expand US-India ties, election-year politics and the inability of decision makers in both countries to implement needed legislative reforms are hindering progress on key bilateral issues.