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Hillary vows 'dramatic expansion' of India-US ties

Jun 18, 2009 03:57 PM IST India India

Washington: In her first major foreign policy speech on India US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton set the tone for things to come.

She called India a major power-house that will shape the 21st century, leading the world along with the US in securing Afghanistan, combating terrorism and climate change.

"The word about India has obviously spread. People know what kind of business and investment opportunities are there. India's growing role in the global economy is accepted the way we accept gravity. And the partnerships that are blooming at all levels are indeed exciting," says Hillary.

On trade she pushed for a resolution of the stalled Doha trade talks which fell apart last year over Washington's refusal to accept India's demand to protect it's market from a flood of cheap imports. Hillary promised America would resist protectionism to defend itself from the global economic downturn.

"President Obama has been clear that the United States has learned the lessons of the past. We will not use the global financial crisis as an excuse to fall back on protectionism," she adds.

On foreign policy, Hillary said stabilising Afghanistan was in the interest of both US and India. She also welcomed this week's meeting between India and Pakistan, the first since the Mumbai attacks.

"The pace scope and character of that dialogue is something Indian and pak leaders will decide on their own terms but as pak now works to take on the challenge of terrorist in its own country I'm confident that India and US will support those efforts," she emphasised.

Hillary also said that Americans need to get over fears that greater ties with India will result in lost jobs and falling wages.


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