WASHINGTON, D.C. (TIP): U.S.-India Business Council (USIBC), On May 6, 2015, hosted an exclusive interaction with Ambassador Arun K. Singh, welcoming him to Washington D.C. in his new post as India’s Ambassador to the United States. Ambassador Singh was the Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of India from 2008- 2013.
Ambassador Singh was warmly received by USIBC Chairman and President and CEO of MasterCard, Ajay Banga and USIBC President, Dr. Mukesh Aghi as well as Council members representing top American and Indian businesses.
“Ambassador Singh returns to Washington D.C. at a time of immense opportunity in bilateral relations between the United States and India. Trade between the two countries is poised to grow from $100 billion to $500 billion in the next few years. We are excited to work with him in achieving this vision over the next few years,” said Dr. Aghi.
“I can’t think of a more consummate diplomat to help strengthen U.S.-India Relations further than Ambassador Singh. Under Prime Minister Modi, India is focused on investment in manufacturing, infrastructure, and tourism to create jobs and improve the quality of life for its citizenry. U.S. companies have a great deal to bring to these efforts, beginning with our technology, capital, intellectual property, and a desire to be long-term players in India’s future. It’s also about how the dialogue is conducted at a time when our friendship and mutual respect continues to increase. That’s immensely important as we seek to deepen the bonds between these two great democracies. I know of no one better-suited to help do just that over the next few years than Ambassador Singh,” said Mr. Ajay Banga.
Nancy Ziuzin Schlegel, Vice President of Lockheed Martin, pledged support for Ambassador Arun K. Singh and said, “Ambassador Singh has been an important partner and friend to U.S. business. As we near the one year anniversary of the Modi Government, I think it is safe to say that we are looking forward to more growth, increased cooperation and closer ties.”
Ambassador Arun K. Singh remarked on the vision of the new Government for India and the actions that have been undertaken since Prime Minister Modi assumed office. He said, “Prime Minister Modi wants India to take its rightful place as a fast growing economy, tapping the potential of its huge young population. The Delhi Declaration of Friendship has been upgraded from a bilateral strategic dialogue to a strategic and commercial dialogue. Working groups such as the Trade Policy Forum, High Technology Cooperation, CEO Forum that had not met for several years have come together yet again over the past year laying the foundation for future joint activities. A U.S. – India infrastructure collaboration platform has been set up to promote deployment of cutting edge U.S. technologies to meet India’s infrastructure needs in power, urbanization, shipping and trade transportation. An inter-ministerial committee has been set up to fast track investment proposals from U.S. companies and address implementation.”
Ambassador Singh also said, “Indian industries have increased investment in the U.S., creating jobs and generating incomes. Indian companies have invested close to $17 billion in the United States. The U.S. -India Business Council can play a proactive role by being the voice of industry on both sides.”
In closing, Justin McCarthy, Senior VP for Global Policy and International Public Affairs at Pfizer said, “I’m encouraged by initiatives such as Make in India and the focus on innovation and research as important drivers of growth. Collaboration between the U.S. and Indian governments and with the business communities holds great promise for the future.”
The event was also attended by Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu, Charge d’Affaires of Embassy of India; Mr. Arun M. Kumar, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Global Markets and Director General of the US and Foreign Commercial Service, U.S. Department of Commerce and International Trade Administration; Former US Ambassador to India, Timothy Roemer; and Mr. KT Rama Rao, Minister of Information Technology and Panchayat Raj, Government of Telangana, India.