Trade, defence, security to be on agenda of Kerry`s talks

Last Updated: Friday, June 21, 2013 - 21:22

New Delhi: Bilateral trade, defence and security cooperation besides energy and higher education would top the agenda of talks between indian leaders and US Secretary of State John Kerry who arrives here on Sunday for the India-US strategic dialogue.
India will also seek from the US information on the opening of a Taliban office in Qatar besides putting across it concerns about the H1B and L category visas that has raised concerns among the Indian industry, especially the IT sector.

The issue of market access, nuclear liability bill and American National Security Agency`s internet snooping programme are also likely to be discussed.

Kerry, who will be undertaking his visit to India since his appointment as Secretary of State five months ago, will also co-chair India-US Higher Education dialogue.

Besides co-chairing the strategic dialogue with External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, Kerry will also meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Kerry is leading a high-powered delegation that also consists of the US Energy Secretary, NASA Director besides US military chief for the Pacific region Admiral Samuel Locklear and top officials from the State Department and Homeland Security.

This is the "first high-political interaction in the second term of the Obama presidency," Vikram Kumar Doraiswami, Joint Secretary AMS (Americas) Division in the Ministry of External Affairs said.

"We will look at having a detailed conversation, more or
less around four broad thematic pillars. One would be bilateral relations which will cover the matter of economy, security aspects of our relations. It would also cover energy.

"The other would be the detailed political consultations that we have with the US on regional and other issues. The third major pillar would be global issues...Inlcuding the evolution of regional architecture in Asia. That is the broad format in which we would have these discussions," Doraiswami said.

MEA Spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said "on the bilateral side, the focus will be on expansion of cooperation in the area of defence and security, trade and investment, science and technology, green energy and environment".

He added it was expected that following the discussions, several new initiatives to strengthen bilateral cooperation in these areas in particular will be identified.

PTI



First Published: Friday, June 21, 2013 - 21:22

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