US formally exits Paris climate Agreement

News: United States has formally exited the Paris Climate Agreement amid election uncertainty. Facts: Why has the United States left the Paris Agreement? According to the US, the agreement had imposed an unfair economic burden on the country and would lead to loss of jobs. The Agreement also gives China and other big polluters an… Continue reading US formally exits Paris climate Agreement

US house Panel passes Bill to promote Legacies of Gandhi and Martin L. King Jr

News: United States congressional committee has passed the Gandhi-King Scholarly Exchange Initiative Act to promote the legacies of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. Facts: Aim: To establish an exchange initiative between India and the United States to study the work and legacies of Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi. Components: The bill… Continue reading US house Panel passes Bill to promote Legacies of Gandhi and Martin L. King Jr

US remains India’s top trading partner in 2019-20

News: Ministry of Commerce and Industry has released the data on Bilateral trade between India-US for 2019-20. Facts: Key Takeaways: Largest Trading Partner: United States(US) has remained India’s top trading partner for the second consecutive fiscal in 2019-20. The bilateral trade between the US and India stood at $ 88.75 billion in 2019-02 as against… Continue reading US remains India’s top trading partner in 2019-20

U.S. position on CAATSA unchanged despite China’s actions in neighbourhood

News: The United States will not change its position on putting sanctions against India under Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act(CAATSA) for buying fighter jets from Russia. Facts: CAATSA: It is a US federal law enacted in 2017 to impose sanctions on Iran, North Korea and Russia. The Act empowers the US President to impose… Continue reading U.S. position on CAATSA unchanged despite China’s actions in neighbourhood

US sanctions against International Criminal Court(ICC)

News: US President has authorised sanctions against International Criminal Court(ICC) officials involved in investigations into possible war crimes by US troops or those of its allies. Facts: International Criminal Court(ICC): It is a permanent judicial body created by the 1998 Rome Statute which entered into force on July 1,2002. Jurisdiction: It has the jurisdiction to… Continue reading US sanctions against International Criminal Court(ICC)

U.S. joins G7 artificial intelligence group to counter China

News:The United States has joined the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence(AI). Facts: The Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence is a G7 countries Partnership initiated by France and Canada. Aim: To study and provide recommendations on the responsible adoption of AI based on shared principles of human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation and economic growth. Additional Facts:… Continue reading U.S. joins G7 artificial intelligence group to counter China

India, U.S. to collaborate on COVID-19 vaccine trials, say U.S. health officials

News:India and the U.S have decided to work together on vaccine research and testing for COVID-19 under the Indo-U.S. Vaccine Action Program(VAP). Facts: The Indo-US Vaccine Action Programme(VAP) is a bilateral programme established in 1987. Aim: To develop and evolve joint R&D projects towards development of safe and efficacious vaccines against some of the major… Continue reading India, U.S. to collaborate on COVID-19 vaccine trials, say U.S. health officials

China may have conducted low-level nuclear test, US claims

News:The United States has claimed that China may have conducted a low level zero yield nuclear test. Facts: Zero yield: It refers to a nuclear test in which there is no explosive chain reaction of the type ignited by the detonation of a nuclear warhead. Additional Facts: Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT)  It is a multilateral… Continue reading China may have conducted low-level nuclear test, US claims

US Approves Sale of Military Hardware

News:The US State Department has approved the sale of missiles and torpedoes worth $155 million to India. Facts: Harpoon Block II Missile: It is an anti-ship missile capable of performing both land-strike and anti-ship missions. It would be integrated into the P-8I aircraft to conduct anti-surface warfare missions in defense of critical sea lanes. MK… Continue reading US Approves Sale of Military Hardware

India, US in talks for dollar swap line

News:India is working with the United States to secure a dollar (currency) swap line that would help in providing an additional comfort in an event of any abrupt outflow of funds. Facts: Dollar Swap arrangement: Under this, the US Federal Reserve will provide dollars to a foreign central bank.  At the same time,the foreign central… Continue reading India, US in talks for dollar swap line

Advanced Extremely High Frequency Satellite(AEHFS)

News:The U.S Space Force Space has successfully launched the sixth Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite. Facts: Advanced Extremely High Frequency(AEHF) are a series of six communications satellites operated by the United States Space Force. Objective: To provide secure satellite communications from geostationary orbits for strategic missions operating on ground, sea and air platforms. The communications… Continue reading Advanced Extremely High Frequency Satellite(AEHFS)

Indo-U.S. Science & Technology Forum(IUSSTF)

News:Indo-U.S. Science & Technology Forum(IUSSTF) has created long-term Science and Technology(S&T) linkages between India & US. Facts: About IUSSTF: The Indo-U.S Science and Technology Forum(IUSSTF) was established under an agreement between the Governments of India and the United States of America in March 2000. It is an autonomous bilateral organization jointly funded by both the… Continue reading Indo-U.S. Science & Technology Forum(IUSSTF)

U.S, Taliban sign peace deal

News:The US and Taliban have signed a peace deal in Doha, the capital of Qatar. Facts: Key provisions of the deal: Withdrawal of the United States troops from Afghanistan. A commitment by the Taliban to end support for U.S.-deemed terrorist organizations. Maintaining a communications channel between US and Taliban to support implementation of the agreement.… Continue reading U.S, Taliban sign peace deal

US President’s Visit to India

News:The US President is on a visit to India.During his visit,several agreements were signed between India and the United States. Facts: India and the United States have decided to upgrade their bilateral relationship to a Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership(CGSP). The CGSP will include issues such as defence, security cooperation and revitalisation of the Indo-Pacific with… Continue reading US President’s Visit to India

US becomes India’s top trading partner

News:According to the 2018-19 data from the Commerce Ministry, the United States has become India’s top trading partner surpassing China. Facts: In 2018-19,the bilateral trade between the US and India stands at USD 87.95 billion as compared to USD 87.07 billion with China. India has a trade surplus of USD 16.85 billion with the USA… Continue reading US becomes India’s top trading partner

Cabinet clears $2.5 billion deal for 24 MH-60 Seahawk helicopters

News:Union Cabinet has cleared the acquisition of 24 MH-60 Seahawk helicopters for the Indian Navy from the United States. Facts: About Seahawk Helicopter: The Seahawks are a multi-mission maritime helicopter developed by Lockheed Martin. They are deployed by the US Navy as its primary anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface weapons system for open ocean and littoral… Continue reading Cabinet clears $2.5 billion deal for 24 MH-60 Seahawk helicopters

US approves sale of Integrated Air Defence Weapon System to India

News:The US has approved the sale of an Integrated Air Defence Weapon System(IADWS) to India. Facts: About Integrated Air Defence Weapon System(IADWS): The Integrated Air Defence Weapon System(IADWS) is also called the National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System(NASAMS-II). It is an upgraded version of the NASAMS developed by the US firm Raytheon in partnership… Continue reading US approves sale of Integrated Air Defence Weapon System to India

US announces launch of International Religious Freedom Alliance

News:The United States has announced the launch of the International Religious Freedom Alliance(IRF Alliance). Facts: About the alliance: Aim:To bring together senior government representatives to discuss actions countries can take together to promote respect for freedom of religion or belief and protect members of religious minority groups worldwide. Around 26 Countries from around the world… Continue reading US announces launch of International Religious Freedom Alliance

Explained:Trump’s New Middle East plan

News:US President has released the Middle East plan,Peace to Prosperity: A Vision to Improve the Lives of the Palestinian and Israeli People. Facts: Issues between Israel and Palestine: The status of Jerusalem including historical sites sacred to Judaism, Islam and Christianity. Establishing mutually agreed borders and finding security arrangements to satisfy Israeli fears of attacks… Continue reading Explained:Trump’s New Middle East plan

US removes designation of China as currency manipulator

News:The US has removed China as a  currency manipulator as the two countries are preparing to sign a trade deal. Facts: About Currency manipulator: Currency manipulation happens when governments try to artificially tweak the exchange rate to gain an unfair advantage in trade. US defines currency manipulation as when countries deliberately influence the exchange rate… Continue reading US removes designation of China as currency manipulator

Defence ties to get push at ‘2+2’ with U.S

News:India and the US will meet for the second 2+2 ministerial dialogue in Washington,US. Facts: About 2+2 dialogue: The 2+2 is a format of dialogue where the defense and foreign ministers or secretaries meet with their counterparts from another country. The 2+2 ministerial dialogue between India and the US was started in 2017. This new… Continue reading Defence ties to get push at ‘2+2’ with U.S

US Congress consents to designate India’s NAVIC as allied system

News:Recently,the US Congress has agreed to designate India’s Navigation in Indian Constellation(NavIC) as its allied navigational satellite system.  Facts: About Allied navigational satellite system:  The allied navigational satellite tag allows the US satellite navigation system to co-operate or to exchange data with these satellite navigation systems. This tag is designated as part of the conference… Continue reading US Congress consents to designate India’s NAVIC as allied system

Explained:What change in US policy on Israeli settlements in West Bank means

News:Recently,the United States has declared that it does not consider Israeli settlements on the West Bank a violation of international law. Facts: About West Bank: West Bank is a landlocked territory in West Asia.It also contains a significant section of the western dead sea. It was captured by Jordan after the Arab-Israeli War(1948) but Israel… Continue reading Explained:What change in US policy on Israeli settlements in West Bank means

U.S. State Department approves $1 billion arms sale to India

News:United States has approved sale of 13 MK 45 naval guns to India and related equipments worth an estimated cost of $1 billion. Facts: About MK 45 naval guns: The MK 45 is manufactured by BAE Systems Land and Armaments at its facilities in Louisville,Kentucky in the US. It is a naval artillery gun designed… Continue reading U.S. State Department approves $1 billion arms sale to India

Trump to host NATO chief as alliance faces strains

News:U.S. President will host NATO Chief to discuss military spending as the U.S continues his effort to press alliance members to pay more toward their own defense. Facts: About NATO: North Atlantic Treaty Organization also called North Atlantic Alliance is an intergovernmental military alliance. It was formed in 1949 with the signing of the Washington… Continue reading Trump to host NATO chief as alliance faces strains

India-US Science and Technology agreement

News:Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for Agreement on Science and Technology Cooperation between India and the United States. Facts: Features of the agreement: India and the United States will share scientific and technical information and experts. The agreement would also enable cooperation between the countries in training the scientists and experts according to the… Continue reading India-US Science and Technology agreement

Explained: What is US-India Defence Technology and Trade Initiative

News:The ninth India-US Defence Technologies and Trade Initiative (DTTI) group meeting is scheduled to happen in New Delhi. Facts: About DTTI: The Defence Technologies and Trade Initiative(DTTI) mechanism was launched in 2012.It is not a treaty or a law.   It aims to include strengthening India’s defence industrial base, exploring new areas of technological development and… Continue reading Explained: What is US-India Defence Technology and Trade Initiative

U.S. House passes Hong Kong ‘Democracy Act’

News:The U.S. House of Representatives has passed a Hong Kong Democracy Act. Facts: Why was the bill passed? Hong Kong has been experiencing protests against a proposed law to allow extradition to mainland China but it has since transformed into a larger pro-democracy movement. The protests have also increasingly turned violent with police being accused… Continue reading U.S. House passes Hong Kong ‘Democracy Act’

Exercise Vajra Prahar

News:The 10th edition of the joint military exercise ‘Vajra Prahar’ between India and the US will be held at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) in Seattle from October 13-28,2019. Facts: About the exercise: Vajra Prahar is a Special Forces joint military training exercise conducted alternately in India and the US since 2010. The exercise enables sharing… Continue reading Exercise Vajra Prahar

After India-Russia missile deal, U.S. warns allies of sanctions risk

News:United States has warned allies to forgo transactions with Russia as this may risk triggering sanctions under CAATSA act. Facts: Background: India and Russia have concluded the deal for five S-400 ‘Triumf’ missile systems. However,the U.S. has warned that the deal would invoke sanctions under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). About Countering… Continue reading After India-Russia missile deal, U.S. warns allies of sanctions risk

Exercise Tiger Triumph

News:India and the United States are set to hold their first tri-services exercise code-named Tiger Triumph at Visakhapatnam and Kakinada in November,2019. Facts: About the exercise: The tri service drill is being organised under the aegis of the headquarters of the Integrated Defence Staff. The exercise will see the participation of a special forces reconnaissance… Continue reading Exercise Tiger Triumph

PM pushes to strengthen FATF

News:On the sidelines of the 74th UN General Assembly session,Indian Prime minister attended the Dialogue on Strategic Responses to Terrorist and Violent Extremist Narratives. Facts: The dialogue was organised by Jordan, France and New Zealand and attended by leaders of about 24 countries but did not include either China or Pakistan. Addressing the session,Indian Prime… Continue reading PM pushes to strengthen FATF

Petronet to invest $2.5 bn in Tellurian’s Louisiana project

News:Indian Prime Minister has met the US President on the visit to the US for the UN General Assembly meeting on September 27,2019. Facts Highlights of the meeting: Indian Prime Minister held a meeting with the CEO’s of 17 global energy companies in Houston,US. The objective of the meeting was to deepen our energy cooperation as… Continue reading Petronet to invest $2.5 bn in Tellurian’s Louisiana project

PACEsetter Fund programme

News:The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has awarded Grants to the awardees of the second round of PACEsetter fund programme. Facts: About the programme: The PACEsetter fund was constituted by India and the USA in 2015. It is a joint fund to provide early-stage grant funding to accelerate the commercialization of innovative off-grid clean… Continue reading PACEsetter Fund programme

Modi, Trump may reference ‘mini-deal’ on trade at Houston event

News:Indian Prime Minister and the US President are expected to announce a mini trade deal during Prime Minister’s visit to the US. Facts: About the trade deal: The trade deal may address some of the US concerns on (a)ICT tariffs (b)data localisation rules (c)price caps on medical equipment like knee implants and (d)agricultural market access… Continue reading Modi, Trump may reference ‘mini-deal’ on trade at Houston event

U.S., India keen to wrap up trade deal

News:United States and India are working on ways to resolve long-disputed trade issues to sign a trade deal. Facts: Issues between India and US: Trade imbalance: India’s exports to the U.S. in 2017-18 stood at $47.9 billion while imports were at $26.7 billion.The trade balance is in favour of India. Tariffs: The bilateral tensions have… Continue reading U.S., India keen to wrap up trade deal

Salmonella

News:United States Food and Drug Administration(FDA) has tested the MDH sambar masala which showed positive for salmonella. Facts: About Salmonella: Salmonella is a group of bacteria that can cause food-borne illnesses known as salmonellosis.  Salmonella bacteria typically live in animal and human intestines and are shed through feces.Humans become infected most frequently through contaminated water… Continue reading Salmonella

China lodges case at WTO against US import duties

China has lodged a case against the United States with the World Trade Organization(WTO) over U.S. import duties. The move was taken after the United States began imposing 15% tariffs on a variety of Chinese goods, including footwear, smart watches, and flat-panel televisions. China has said that the latest tariff actions by US has violated… Continue reading China lodges case at WTO against US import duties

Iran’s Rouhani says no talks with US until sanctions lifted

Iranian president has ruled out meeting US President until the US lifts sanctions on Iran. This statement came after French President has said that he would try to arrange a meeting between US President and Iran to ease the strained relationship between the two countries. The US and Iran have been locked in a stand-off… Continue reading Iran’s Rouhani says no talks with US until sanctions lifted

Imports from U.S. to grow, trade Ministers to meet soon

Indian Prime Minister has met US President on the sidelines of the G-7 Summit in France. During the meeting,the Indian PM said that India has planned to increase imports including oil from the US and $4 billion worth of imports were already in the pipeline. India and the US has differences over trade imbalance between… Continue reading Imports from U.S. to grow, trade Ministers to meet soon

PM rejects scope for third party mediation in Kashmir

Indian Prime Minister has met US President on the sidelines of the G-7 Summit in France. During the meeting,Indian PM has rejected any scope for a third party mediation between India and Pakistan on Kashmir.He reiterated that Kashmir is a bilateral issue. This statement came after US President has offered to mediate between India and… Continue reading PM rejects scope for third party mediation in Kashmir

G7 Summit: signs of hope as Donald Trump says U.S.-China trade talks are on

The Group of Seven(G7) summit was held in Biarritz,France.During the summit,US President has said the US and China will be resuming trade talks shortly. The US and China are negotiating a trade deal that would end the trade war between both the countries that has been escalating since last year. Trade war is a situation… Continue reading G7 Summit: signs of hope as Donald Trump says U.S.-China trade talks are on

Donald Trump reportedly wants Greenland. Can you really buy a foreign territory

U.S. President has said that he wants to buy Greenland.However,the Denmark government dismissed his statement and said that Greenland was not for sale. Greenland is the world’s largest island.It is an autonomous Denmark dependent territory with limited self-government and its own parliament. Denmark contributes two thirds of Greenland’s budget revenue while the rest comes mainly… Continue reading Donald Trump reportedly wants Greenland. Can you really buy a foreign territory

Modi, Trump to meet: Kashmir and trade will be on table

Indian Prime Minister will meet US President on the sidelines of the G-7 Summit in France. The two leaders are expected to hold talks to resolve the differences over trade and investment. India and the United States has differences over issues such as trade imbalance between India and the US.India’s exports to the U.S. in… Continue reading Modi, Trump to meet: Kashmir and trade will be on table

India-U.S. 2+2 meeting

Indian and U.S. officials will hold a 2+2 intersessional and the Maritime Security Dialogue in California,USA. 2+2 is a format of dialogue where the defense and foreign ministers or secretaries meet with their counterparts from another country. The 2+2 Dialogue between India and US aims to enhance strategic coordination between both countries and maintaining peace… Continue reading India-U.S. 2+2 meeting

IMF warns against rate cuts, currency intervention to improve trade balance

The International Monetary Fund(IMF) has warned the United States and China that higher bilateral tariffs are unlikely to reduce aggregate trade imbalances as they mainly divert trade to other countries. Instead,they are likely to harm both domestic and global growth by affecting business confidence and investment and disrupting global supply chains. The IMF has also… Continue reading IMF warns against rate cuts, currency intervention to improve trade balance

Defying U.S., Gibraltar frees Iran tanker

Gibraltar has released an Iranian oil tanker named Grace 1.The oil tanker was stopped by the UK navy after the government of Gibraltar suggested it was heading for Syria. Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory located at the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula.It occupies a commanding position at the western gateway to the Mediterranean… Continue reading Defying U.S., Gibraltar frees Iran tanker

China vows to counter U.S. deployment of intermediate-range missiles in Asia

China has warned the United States that it would take countermeasures if the US goes ahead with its plans to deploy ground-based missiles in the Asia Pacific region. This statement came after US Defense Secretary has said that the US was now free to deploy the weapons following its withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces(INF)… Continue reading China vows to counter U.S. deployment of intermediate-range missiles in Asia

US says China manipulates yuan. What does that mean, how is it done?

The US Treasury Department has declared China as a currency manipulator.This move comes after China allowed the yuan to suddenly depreciate or lose value relative to the dollar. In retaliation,the US has also announced that it would approach the International Monetary Fund(IMF) to eliminate the unfair competitive advantage created by China’s latest actions. Foreign Exchange… Continue reading US says China manipulates yuan. What does that mean, how is it done?