WASHINGTON, Sept 4: A high-level US delegation will visit India from Monday to attend key meetings to deepen the bilateral strategic partnership and discuss ways to expand cooperation to support a free and open, resilient and secure Indo-Pacific region, the State Department has said.
The US delegation visiting India during September 5-8 will be led by Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu.
Lu will be joined by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Camille Dawson for a Quad Senior Officials Meeting and Department of Defence Assistant Secretary for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs Ely Ratner for a US-India 2+2 Intersessional Meeting and Maritime Security Dialogue, the State Department said in a statement on Saturday.
The objective of the meeting is to deepen the US-India Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership, it said.
“The delegation will meet with senior Indian officials to discuss ways in which the United States and India can expand our cooperation to support a free and open, connected, prosperous, resilient, and secure Indo-Pacific region where human rights are respected,” the statement said.
India, the US and several other world powers have been talking about the need to ensure a free, open and thriving Indo-Pacific in the backdrop of China’s rising military manoeuvring in the resource-rich region.
China claims nearly all of the disputed South China Sea, though Taiwan, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam all claim parts of it. Beijing has built artificial islands and military installations in the South China Sea.
Lu will also join an event under the US-India Alliance for Women’ Economic Empowerment with female entrepreneurs. The event is aimed at increasing economic security through women’s meaningful participation in the workforce, the State Department said.
“He will also engage in a roundtable discussion with senior business executives about how India can realise its full economic potential over the next 25 years to become a central hub in global supply chains,” it said.
Last month, US Deputy Secretary of Treasury Wally Adeyemo visited India and discussed with Indian policymakers ways to jointly deal with global challenges like food insecurity and high energy prices, amidst Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Adeyemo met Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Principal Secretary to the prime minister PK Mishra, Finance Secretary Ajay Seth, Foreign Secretary Vijay Kwatra and Petroleum Secretary Pankaj Jain.
A readout by the US Department of Treasury on August 26 said Adeyemo shared with his counterparts the United States’ views on ways to “put downward pressure” on energy prices for consumers and businesses in India, the US, and globally.
It said he also underscored the importance of further deepening the already strong US-India relationship, including through platforms like the Quad and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework. (PTI)