Ashok Gulati writes on the US and India: Old friends in a changing world

Source- The post is based on the article “Ashok Gulati writes on the US and India: Old friends in a changing world” published in “The Indian Express” on 26th June 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- Bilateral groupings and agreements

Relevance– India and US bilateral relationship in global context

News- Recently, PM Modi visited the US and addressed the US Congress a second time.

What are the factors behind increasing closeness between India and the US?

Market size of the Indian economy is increasing. There is the growing influence of the Indian diaspora in American business and politics

The China factor may be the most important one for the current closeness. China’s meteoric rise is being seen as a threat to global security by many nations.

The QUAD is a forum to contain aggressive designs of China. The current US-India friendship is only an extension of that at a bilateral level.

Why is there a need for cooperation between three big powers-US, India and China?

The US has been a superpower. As per the IMF, the US economy in April 2023 stood at $26.6 trillion with a per capita GDP of $80,000.

In comparison to that, India has an overall GDP of $3.74 trillion and a per capita GDP of just $2,600. In PPP terms, India’s GDP is $13 trillion, and its per capita GDP is about $9,000.

China, in PPP terms, is already the largest economy. In current US dollar terms, the Chinese economy stands at $19.37 trillion, next only to the US.

For world peace and prosperity, it would be best if the three countries can work together.

What is the way forward for cooperation between big power to ensure world peace and prosperity?

Political system of democracy should be preferred over authoritarian regimes. Democracy has flaws, but it is certainly better than military or authoritarian regimes.

With the Ukraine-Russia conflict, global powers are realigning into new groupings. India should make efforts to bring dialogue and diplomacy to resolve strong differences.

What should be the focus area of India-US cooperation in the near future?

Food and nutritional security are important for the planet. This is being threatened by climate change with increasing temperatures. The poorer nations suffer disproportionately. India is no exception.

The US is at the forefront of technologies in agriculture. In the 1960s several state agricultural projects with the support and mentoring of their counterparts in the US were instrumental in shaping India’s Green Revolution.

India’s agricultural universities need to be rejuvenated with cutting-edge technologies to cope with climate change and produce more nutritious food with less land, less water, and less GHG emissions.

In the next round of US-India collaboration, there should be a special attempt to include food and agriculture as one of the core areas of cooperation.

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