Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis arrived in New Delhi, India on Tuesday after spending two days in Mumbai, India.
On Tuesday, Ambassador Marantis met with Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar - the first time the two met since their respective appointments - to discuss a plan for reengagement under the bilateral Trade Policy Forum (TPF). They both agreed that the TPF is an important tool for discussing trade and investment issues, and that there is much room for the two governments to collaborate to promote greater two-way trade and investment. The two concluded that the governments would engage in frequent consultations with the aim of achieving concrete results on our bilateral agenda.
Yesterday, Ambassador Marantis met with the Confederation of Indian Indistry (CII) to give a speech about the bilateral trade relationship, and efforts to make the Trade Policy Forum a more effective tool for overcoming trade impediments while also exploring areas for more US-India collaboration.
"Job creation in the U.S. as a result of trade with India follows many paths.
CII cites the direct creation of 8,300 jobs in the aviation sector. We know that when India acquires U.S. goods such as Boeing aircraft (over $10 billion dollars worth in recent years), those planes are being built in U.S. plants by American hands.
Similar stories for different reasons come in the other sectors. Retail jobs are enabled in the U.S. through the sourcing of jewelry from India. Indian pharmaceutical firms are setting up offices and operations in the U.S., hiring Americans.
And, India's defense sector, an area in which the United States was essentially a non-player until 8 years ago, is now another driver of trade and jobs, with companies such as Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Boeing supplying the Government of India with sophisticated defense equipment.
On the other side of the ledger, so to speak, is the reality that India has also benefited enormously from trade and investment with the United States.
The United States is India's largest trading partner, and a top consumer, for example, of India's agricultural, jewelry, and textiles exports. These create jobs in the thousands, especially among farmers and small businesses who are most in need of economic empowerment in India.
And, that doesn't even include the jobs that have been created through India-U.S. ties in the IT sector. The success of this sector in India has helped foster a new sense in India that Indians can accomplish anything. But, it was India's ties with the U.S. that helped to propel that sector.
For all the alleged divides between the U.S. and India over trade-related liberalization, it is critical that people in India not forget that one of the manifestations of the shared economic interests of the United States and India is the fact that the United States is India's most important export market, and that those exports have and still are creating jobs in India, thus demonstrating the value of trade in general and trade with the United States in particular."
After his speech, Ambassador Marantis toured the Apollo Hospital in Delhi and discussed with Apollo Hospital Group Chairman Dr. Prathap Reddy ideas for using the bilateral dialogue to encourage US-India collaboration in healthcare and related services. Apollo Hospitals was founded in 1983 and today has more than 7,500 beds in 43 hospitals across India, Asia and Africa. The network also includes pharmacies, medical BPO and health insurance services, diagnostic clinics and clinical research divisions.
The hospital that Ambassador Marantis toured in Delhi is Apollo's largest. Founded in 1996 as a joint venture between Apollo Hospitals Group and the Government of Delhi, it is spread over 12 acres of land, has a 560 bed capacity and 14 operating rooms. Ambassador Marantis was particularly impressed with the facility and its technological capacity. It was the first hospital to be awarded the gold-standard certification from the Joint Commission International, a U.S.-based accreditation agency for healthcare organizations.
At a meeting with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Ambassador Marantis discussed bilateral trade issues, including US-India collaboration on trade in clean energy technologies. He also met with Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, and they discussed the Trade Policy Forum's important role in the US-India Strategic Dialogue. Finally, he met with the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) Director Rajiv Kumar and discussed ideas for boosting bilateral trade and investment. ICRIER is one of India's foremost economic think-tanks.
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