Huge potential for cooperation with India: US



Washington: US sees "huge potential" for co-operation with India and wants New Delhi to play a more "robust" role in certain international arena, a top American security official said.

Expanding economic ties, increasing exports, continuing co-operation on counter-terrorism issues and Afghanistan, implementation of the civilian nuclear deal, working together on key global issues like development in Africa or climate change, and close co-ordination in the Asia Pacific region are some of the key issues, which is expected to drive the Obama Administration's India policy in its second term, the official said.

"India is definitely in the category of rapidly emerging democracy, where we see huge potential for co-operation.

Economically, we want to continue to increase our co-operation with India, our exports to India, and we believe there is a great potential in that relationship," Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communication for US President, told the White House Foreign Press Group in a round table yesterday.

"We have close counter terrorism co-operation with India, which we have to continue given the threats that continue to emanate from the region.

"On the nuclear issue, we are going to continue to have our co-operation, we want to make sure that US companies again have the type of access they are entitled to and in that process so we had a dialogue with India about moving forward with our nuclear relationship. We will continue to do so going forward," Rhodes said.

The United States, he said, would like to see India play "more robust role" in certain international areas.

"So, on climate, India is a critical partner in making any international climate agreement successful. So we will continue to work with India on climate," he said, adding, US would like to increase its partnership with India in developmental efforts in Africa.

"One of the things that the President talked about when he was travelling to India was how can the US and India draw from India's experience to help promote food security in parts of Africa for instance," he said.

"We also co-operate with India on Afghanistan. As we look at the future of South Asia broadly, India is certainly going to have a role in promoting stability and in supporting a democratic Afghan government beyond 2014.”

“It has not only provided a lot of assistance in Afghanistan and we think that is positive and it continues to play that role," Rhodes further said.

‘As such there is broad agenda with India that the United States will build on going forward,” he said.

"We look at India as a fellow democracy, a country that shares not just interests with the United States but also values. We welcome India's focus on Asia as well," he said praising India's Look East Policy.

"I think, it’s good for India to be at the table and in discussing issues like maritime security in the Asia Pacific," the White House official said.

PTI