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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina jointly inaugurate a major road named after former Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Mujibur Rahman during an agreement signing ceremony in New Delhi on April 8, 2017. us-india-bangladesh-trade-gsp

The U.S. Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program, launched in 1975, was designed to promote economic development and diversification among developing countries by encouraging their exports to the United States. Under the GSP, eligible products enter duty-free. As of January 2021, 119 developing countries were beneficiaries of the program.

Bangladesh and India are not current beneficiaries of the U.S. GSP. Although members of the program since 1985 and 1975, respectively, Bangladesh was denied access in 2013 and India in 2019. The United States should consider restoring GSP status for both countries for its own benefit as much as theirs.

India is a critical, long-term partner for the United States.…  Seguir leyendo »

India has long been one of the more pro-American countries in the world. While President Donald Trump doesn't enjoy the same support as predecessors former Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush -- presumably because of his trade threats and his restrictions on visas for highly-skilled workers, most of which go to Indians -- that broad approval remains largely intact, with 56% of Indians polled saying they had confidence in Trump to do the right thing on world affairs.

Indian diplomats say privately that handling the Trump administration has been complicated. At one level, India and the US have continued to move their nascent strategic relationship forward with mutual concerns about China's territorial and political assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific serving as the backdrop.…  Seguir leyendo »

En marcado contraste con el eficaz liderazgo mostrado por la canciller alemana Angela Merkel, el presidente surcoreano Moon Jae-in y la tecnocracia autocrática de Singapur, en todo el mundo los nacionalistas de ultraderecha han respondido a la crisis de la COVID‑19 con algo que no se había visto en décadas: la política fascista de la enfermedad. Y el mejor ejemplo es el presidente de Brasil, Jair Bolsonaro.

Es verdad que otros pocos líderes mundiales (entre ellos el presidente nicaragüense Daniel Ortega y los dictadores de Bielorrusia, Turkmenistán y Corea del Norte) siguen negando que el coronavirus suponga algún riesgo. Pero entre los negacionistas del coronavirus, Bolsonaro es un caso aparte.…  Seguir leyendo »

In an election campaign that has made Donald Trump look like a crazy, self-imploding clown, here are two statements the Republican presidential nominee has made that are indisputably true. The first was his observation that airports in the United States are like those in a (so-called) “Third World country.” The second was his comment that the India-Pakistan equation is a “very, very hot tinderbox.”

Indians and Pakistanis who agree on nothing these days found themselves nervously giggling in unison at Trump’s offer to “mediate” between the two countries. But unwittingly the bombastic candidate actually flagged one of the foreign policy challenges that could necessitate the next U.S.…  Seguir leyendo »

There once was a conservative candidate who promised a new era of economic growth. He promised to get tougher on a neighboring country he viewed as hostile, and he was widely feared by Muslims. He vowed to run the country like a company: efficiently and pro-business.

His name is Narendra Modi and he is currently the prime minister of India.

Modi's success underscores the speed and magnitude at which politics can change. In a U.S. election season that has surprised many, it could foreshadow how the rise of Donald Trump -- underscored by one recent national poll showing him now leading Hillary Clinton -- might play out.…  Seguir leyendo »

La visita del primer ministro indio Narendra Modi a Washington (EE. UU.) en junio no llamó mucho la atención de nadie fuera de la India. Pero es indudable que diplomáticos y expertos militares en Asia y otros sitios la observaron atentamente. Por buenos motivos: el reacercamiento entre las dos democracias más populosas del planeta puede definir el futuro del mundo.

Hay que destacar que en su discurso ante el Congreso estadounidense, Modi usó las palabras “socio” o “asociación” no menos de 15 veces. La declaración conjunta oficial emitida por ambos gobiernos describe a la India como “socio militar importante” de Estados Unidos, lo que le da acceso a tecnologías avanzadas con aplicación militar.…  Seguir leyendo »

A new maritime balance in Indo-Pacific region

Recently it was reported in sections of the media that the United States and India have held talks about conducting joint naval patrols that could possibly include the disputed South China Sea.

The U.S. and Indian government officials were quick to dismiss the report. Washington suggested that while the U.S. and India have a shared vision of peace, stability and prosperity in Asia, the two countries were not planning joint maritime patrols in the Indian Ocean or South China Sea. New Delhi also argued that there was no change in India’s policy of joining international military efforts only under the U.N.…  Seguir leyendo »

Cuando el Primer Ministro de la India, Narendra Modi, invitó al Presidente de los Estados Unidos, Barack Obama, a asistir a las ceremonias del Día de la República de su país en fecha anterior de este año, indicó un cambio importante en las relaciones entre las dos democracias mayores del mundo. Desde el decenio de 1990, tres gobiernos americanos han intentado mejorar las relaciones bilaterales, con resultados irregulares. Si bien el comercio entre los dos países se ha disparado durante ese período, de 20.000 millones de dólares a más de 100.000 millones, el comercio anual entre los EE.UU. y China es seis veces mayor y la relación política ha tenido altibajos.…  Seguir leyendo »

The current international attention on the nuclear deal with Iran obscures another much-trumpeted nuclear accord signed a decade ago — between the United States and India. On the 10th anniversary of the U.S.-India nuclear deal, six words sum it up: Built on hype, deflated by reality. Indeed, it has become the forgotten nuclear deal.

When it was unveiled by U.S. President George W. Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Washington on July 18, 2005, the deal was touted as a major transformative initiative — one that would serve as a “basis for expanding bilateral activities and commerce in space, civil nuclear energy and dual-use technology.”…  Seguir leyendo »

The U.S.-India nuclear breakthrough that wasn’t

During U.S. President Barack Obama’s recent India visit, a stalled, decade-old civil nuclear deal took center-stage, with the two sides announcing a breakthrough on the contentious issues blocking its implementation — a development that promised to potentially open the path for a Japan-India nuclear deal. It now appears that the breakthrough was more hype than reality and that there is little prospect of the U.S.-India deal’s early commercialization.

With Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi by his side, Obama announced that “we achieved a breakthrough understanding on two issues that were holding up our ability to advance our civil nuclear cooperation.” The two issues identified were nuclear accident liability and the administrative arrangements to govern the bilateral nuclear cooperation agreement — the successor to an accord the United States unilaterally terminated after India detonated a nuclear device in 1974.…  Seguir leyendo »

La Ley de atención médica asequible y protección a los pacientes, de los Estados Unidos, la reforma de la atención de la salud, marca distintiva del presidente Barack Obama, ha logrado ampliar la cobertura del seguro médico a millones de estadounidenses que no habrían podido tenerlo. Y en contra de las advertencias de sus críticos, no ha provocado que aumenten los precios de la atención a la salud, de hecho, hay esperanzas de que la curva de los precios por fin esté comenzando a disminuir.

No obstante, no es seguro que "Obamacare" vaya a poder limitar los costos excesivamente altos de la atención médica.…  Seguir leyendo »

President Obama, who is visiting India this weekend, and India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, have both described their countries as natural partners. That may be true. But they cannot achieve a deep and strategic partnership until the United States deals more forthrightly with Pakistan, New Delhi’s neighbor and nemesis.

In other words, Washington must do more to address India’s anxieties about Pakistan. But there is a conundrum. Washington should also not harm its delicate and distrustful relationship with Islamabad.

Yes, Pakistan harbors jihadist groups that threaten and kill Americans. But it also sits astride the Middle East and Asia, boasts a large and young population, and enjoys deep friendships with China and Saudi Arabia.…  Seguir leyendo »

As nations committed to democracy, liberty, diversity and enterprise, India and the United States are bound by common values and mutual interests. We have each shaped the positive trajectory of human history, and through our joint efforts, our natural and unique partnership can help shape international security and peace for years to come.

Ties between the United States and India are rooted in the shared desire of our citizens for justice and equality. When Swami Vivekananda presented Hinduism as a world religion, he did so at the 1893 World’s Parliament of Religions in Chicago. When Martin Luther King Jr. sought to end discrimination and prejudice against African Americans, he was inspired by Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent teachings.…  Seguir leyendo »

The outcome of India's national election — a resounding triumph for the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party — has put the United States in an awkward position.

The BJP's Narendra Modi will soon be India's prime minister. In 2005, Washington revoked his U.S. visa, citing a law banning visits by foreign officials responsible for egregious violations of religious freedom. Modi, the chief minister of Gujarat state, had been accused of not doing enough to stop deadly communal riots in 2002 that left at least 1,000 people dead, most of them Muslims.

Predictably, Washington and New Delhi are abuzz about the implications of the BJP's victory for the U.S.-India…  Seguir leyendo »

Could the word “Khobragade” soon become a part of the English language?

"Khobragade (kho-braa-guh-dey): Noun. A person whose situation or predicament exposes the gulf in understanding between two cultures. Also, one who seeks relief from a charge under one set of laws by recourse to another, more contentious, legal frame or emotional appeal. Also: The tendency of human institutions, or states, to become hopelessly drawn into and enmeshed in a relatively trivial dispute at the expense of larger matters, leading to outcomes that please neither party, except to the extent that they displease the other side".

That might be just one of the long-term effects across language, law, diplomacy and cross-cultural relations of the Dec.…  Seguir leyendo »

India and the United States have become embroiled in a full-scale diplomatic row involving the case of Devyani Khobragade, an Indian diplomat who was arrested last week and charged with visa fraud by U.S. authorities. Prosecutors claim she imported and employed an Indian housekeeper to whom she paid only a small fraction of her promised wages.

After Khobragade's arrest, she was strip-searched in a private setting by a female U.S. marshal. This in particular caused a firestorm of criticism in India, though prosecutors and police claim all standard procedures were followed and that Khobragade was even given special considerations due to her diplomatic status.…  Seguir leyendo »

India and the U.S. have become embroiled in a rapidly escalating diplomatic imbroglio that is reminiscent of Cold War theatricals yet lacks even the perverse logic of those standoffs. The crisis was set off by the sudden arrest and temporary detention in New York on Dec. 11 of Devyani Khobragade, an Indian deputy consul general, on the charge of “visa fraud and false statements in connection with household employee’s visa application.”

Her offense -- a somewhat cynical one, to be sure, but almost certainly not limited to her alone -- was to have brought to the U.S. on an A-3 visa a maid from India (which requires the signing of a contract between employer and employee that guarantees the payment of at least the U.S.…  Seguir leyendo »

Narendra Modi, 62, has been the chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat for almost 12 years, and will almost certainly run for prime minister in next year's general elections.

It was an incident of no small consequence, then, when Modi's invitation to deliver, via videoconference, the keynote address at the University of Pennsylvania's annual Wharton India Economic Forum was abruptly rescinded earlier this week, after Indian-American academics circulated a petition criticizing his human-rights record.

And therein lies a tale of two extremes. Gujarat under Modi has an impressive record of economic growth, infrastructure development and delivery of public goods such as primary education.…  Seguir leyendo »

Cuando las elecciones en los EE.UU. están a la vuelta de la esquina, tal vez el aspecto más llamativo desde el punto de vista indio es el de que nadie en Nueva Delhi está indebidamente preocupado por el resultado. Ahora existe un amplio consenso en los círculos políticos indios de que, sea quien fuere el que gane, las relaciones entre la India y los EE.UU. van más o menos por la vía correcta.

Esta situación se debe tanto a los demócratas como a los republicanos. La lograda visita del Presidente Barack Obama a la India en 2010 y su histórico discurso ante una sesión conjunta del Parlamento, constituyó el más importante hito reciente en las relaciones bilaterales.…  Seguir leyendo »

China’s slowing economy, Europe’s precarious fiscal crisis and the recent focus on Afghanistan at the NATO summit all point to challenges and opportunities for the United States — and for India. Growing cooperation over the past decade has brought our two democracies closer. With the Obama administration’s “rebalance to Asia,” now is the time to focus on tangible results that will deliver economic benefits to the middle classes of both countries.

This week’s “strategic dialogue” between Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna should prioritize the building of stronger trade and commercial relationships to compensate for losses in other global markets and to help people struggling at home.…  Seguir leyendo »