Indo-US civil nuke deal my proudest moment: Condi Rice

Lauding the Indian democracy, Rice said India was a good example of what democratic systems can achieve.

Updated: Apr 29, 2012, 21:33 PM IST

Washington: Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who was at the helm of US foreign policy when the civil nuclear deal was charted out with India has listed the historic agreement as one of her "proudest moments".

Rice, who as Secretary of State, played a frontal role in the years leading up to the operationalisation of the agreement had signed the deal along with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in October, 2008.

"One of my proudest moments was watching the US-India civil nuclear agreement being signed," Rice said in her key note address to the inaugural annual summit of the US India Business Summit (USIBC) on the West Coast being organised in association with the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

Lauding the Indian democracy, Rice said India was a good example of what democratic systems can achieve.

"India is a wonderful example of what democratic institutions can achieve. The Indian democracy cannot be underestimated," Rice said in her address which was attended by some 300 top businesses from both the US and India, including a delegation of top Indian corporate leaders from India brought by FICCI.

Themed `Building Bridges, Fostering Innovation,` the conference poignantly addressed the dynamic potential that exists in present and future collaboration between the US and India.

Discussions led by prominent business and policy leaders focused on the most pressing political and economic issues impacting US-India relations, as well as technology and innovation, renewable energy and trade and investment.

Andy Bird, chairman, Walt Disney International said India was all about cricket, film and television, and so Disney had to be involved in at least two of these areas to be successful there.

"So our strategy in India has been driven by media. As part of strategy, we`ve acquired media companies there. We are just learning to walk in India, but pretty soon we`ll be jogging and running and we`re looking forward to a very bright and exciting future there," he said.

Observing that collaboration is the future, Wim Elfrink, EVP, Emerging Solutions & Chief, Globalisation Officer, Cisco Systems said in 2020, India will be the youngest country in the world, with one in three workers in the world being Indian.

Additionally, 100 million Indian are expected to urbanise in the next 10 years.
Needless to say, this is a tremendous opportunity for US and India to collaborate, he said.

Vinod Khosla, partner, Khosla Ventures said the
willingness to fail allows one the opportunity to succeed.

"But when you have the chance to succeed make sure it`s something consequential. Innovators need to keep in mind that you can only lose one times your money, but you can make 100 times as much," he noted.

"Innovation happens in an evolutionary way, in small increments as opposed to something big happening all at once. Some areas are riper for innovation than others," he said.

Paul Maritz, president & chief executive officer, VMware, Inc said there was need to change the system of education.