Index

March 21, 2000

U.S.-India Relations: A Vision for the 21st Century

                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary
                            (New Delhi, India)

___________________________________________________________________________
_____
For Immediate Release                                                 March
21, 2000
                        JOINT U.S.-INDIA STATEMENT


            U.S.-India Relations: A Vision for the 21st Century


     At the dawn of a new century, President Clinton and Prime Minister
Vajpayee resolve to create a closer and qualitatively new relationship
between the United States and India.

     We are two of the world's largest democracies.  We are nations forged
from many traditions and faiths, proving year after year that diversity is
our strength.  From vastly different origins and experiences, we have come
to the same conclusions: that freedom and democracy are the strongest bases
for both peace and prosperity, and that they are universal aspirations,
constrained neither by culture nor levels of economic development

     There have been times in the past when our relationship drifted
without a steady course.  As we now look towards the future, we are
convinced that it is time to chart a new and purposeful direction in our
relationship.

     Globalization is erasing boundaries and building networks between
nations and peoples, economies and cultures.  The world is increasingly
coming together around the democratic ideals India and the United States
have long championed and lived by.

     Together, we represent a fifth of the world's people, more than a
quarter of the world's economy.  We have built creative, entrepreneurial
societies.  We are leaders in the information age.  The currents of
commerce and culture that link our societies run strong and deep.  In many
ways, the character of the 21st century world will depend on the success of
our cooperation for peace, prosperity, democracy and freedom.

     That presents us with an opportunity, but also a profound
responsibility to work together.  Our partnership of shared ideals leads us
to seek a natural partnership of shared endeavors.

     In the new century, India and the United States will be partners in
peace, with a common interest in and complementary responsibility for
ensuring regional and international security.  We will engage in regular
consultations on, and work together for, strategic stability in Asia and
beyond.  We will bolster joint efforts to counter terrorism and meet other
challenges to regional peace.  We will strengthen the international
security system, including in the United Nations, and support the United
Nations in its peacekeeping efforts.  We acknowledge that tensions in South
Asia can only be resolved by the nations of South Asia.  India is committed
to enhancing cooperation, peace and stability in the region.

     India and the United States share a commitment to reducing and
ultimately eliminating nuclear weapons, but we have not always agreed on
how to reach this common goal.  The United States believes India should
forgo nuclear weapons.  India believes that it needs to maintain a credible
minimum nuclear deterrent in keeping with its own assessment of its
security needs.  Nonetheless, India and the U.S. are prepared to work
together to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and their means of
delivery.  To this end, we will persist with and build upon the productive
bilateral dialogue already underway.

     We reaffirm our respective voluntary commitments to forgo further
nuclear explosive tests.  We will work together and with others for an
early commencement of negotiations on a treaty to end the production of
fissile materials for nuclear weapons.  We have both shown strong
commitments to export controls, and will continue to strengthen them.  We
will work together to prevent the spread of dangerous technologies.  We are
committed to build confidence and reduce the chances of miscalculation.  We
will pursue our security needs in a restrained and responsible manner, and
will not engage in nuclear and missile arms races.  We will seek to narrow
our differences and increase mutual understanding on non-proliferation and
security issues.  This will help us to realize the full potential of
Indo-U.S. relations and contribute significantly to regional and global
security.

     The true measure of our strength lies in the ability of our people to
shape their destiny and to realize their aspirations for a better life.
That is why the United States and India are and will be allies in the cause
of democracy.  We will share our experience in nurturing and strengthening
democratic institutions the world over and fighting the challenge to
democratic order from forces such as terrorism.  We will cooperate with
others to launch an international Community of Democracies this year.

     The United States applauds India's success in opening its economy, its
achievements in science and technology, its commitment to a new wave of
economic expansion and reform, and its determination to bring the benefits
of economic growth to all its people.  Our nations pledge to reduce
impediments to bilateral trade and investment and to expand commerce
between us, especially in the emerging knowledge-based industries and
high-technology areas.

     We will work together to preserve stability and growth in the global
economy as well.  And we will join in an unrelenting battle against poverty
in the world, so that the promise of a new economy is felt everywhere and
no nation is left behind.  That is among the fundamental challenges of our
time.  Opening trade and resisting protectionism are the best means for
meeting it.  We support an open, equitable and transparent rule-based
multilateral trading system, and we will work together to strengthen it. We
agree that developed countries should embrace policies that offer
developing countries the opportunity to grow, because growth is the key to
rising incomes and rising standards.  At the same time, we share the
conviction that human development also requires empowerment of people and
availability of basic freedoms.

     As leaders in the forefront of the new high-technology economy, we
recognize that countries can achieve robust economic growth while
protecting the environment and taking action to combat climate change.  We
will do our part to meet the global environmental challenges, including
climate change and the impacts of air and water pollution on human health.

     We also pledge a common effort to battle the infectious diseases that
kill people and retard progress in so many countries.  India is at the
forefront of the global effort that has brought us to the threshold of the
eradication of polio.  With leadership, joint research, and application of
modern science, we can and will do the same for the leading killers of our
time, including AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis.

     We are proud of the cooperation between Indians and Americans in
advancing frontiers of knowledge.  But even as we unravel the mysteries of
time and space, we must continue to apply our knowledge to older
challenges: eradicating human suffering, disease and poverty.  In the past,
our cooperation helped ease mass hunger in the world.  In the future, it
will focus as well on the development of clean energy, health, and
education.

     Our partnership is not an end in itself, but a means to all these
ends.  And it is reinforced by the ties of scholarship, commerce, and
increasingly of kinship among our people.  The industry, enterprise and
cultural contributions of Americans of Indian heritage have enriched and
enlivened both our societies.

     Today, we pledge to deepen the Indian-American partnership in tangible
ways, always seeking to reconcile our differences through dialogue and
engagement, always seizing opportunities to advance the countless interests
we have in common.  As a first step, President Clinton has invited Prime
Minister Vajpayee to visit Washington at a mutually convenient opportunity,
and the Prime Minister has accepted that invitation.  Henceforth, the
President of the United States and the Prime Minister of India should meet
regularly to institutionalize our dialogue.  We have also agreed on and
separately outlined an architecture of additional high-level consultations,
and of joint working groups, across the broad spectrum of areas in which we
are determined to institutionalize our enhanced cooperation.  And we will
encourage even stronger people-to-people ties.

     For India and the United States, this is a day of new beginnings.  We
have before us for the first time in 50 years the possibility to realize
the full potential of our relationship.  We will work to seize that chance,
for our benefit and all those with whom we share this increasingly
interdependent world.



__________________________________
__________________________________
William Jefferson Clinton                   Atal Behari Vajpayee
President of the United States of                Prime Minister of India
America

Done on March 21, 2000 at New Delhi



                             AGREED PRINCIPLES

                          Institutional Dialogue
                    Between the United States and India


1.   During the visit of President Clinton to Delhi in March 2000,
President Clinton and Prime Minister Vajpayee agreed as part of their
vision for the future relationship that a regular, wide-ranging dialogue is
important for achieving the goal of establishing closer and multifaceted
relations between India and the United States and for the two countries to
work jointly for promotion of peace and prosperity in the 21st century.
The two leaders agreed on a number of steps to intensify and
institutionalize the dialogue between India and the United States.

2.   The President of the United States and Prime Minister of India will
hold regular bilateral 'Summits' in alternating capitals or elsewhere,
including on the occasions of multilateral meetings, to review bilateral
relations and consult on international developments and issues.  They will
remain in frequent contact by telephone and through letters.

3.   The two countries will also hold an Annual Foreign Policy Dialogue at
the level of the Secretary of State of the United States and External
Affairs Minister of India.  This dialogue will be broad-based and touch
upon all aspects of US-India relations, including considering the work of
other groups as appropriate.

4.   The two countries also consider the ongoing Dialogue on Security and
Non-proliferation between the Deputy Secretary of State of the United
States and External Affairs Minister of India important for improving
mutual understanding on bilateral, regional and international security
matters.  They agreed that this dialogue should continue and take place
semi-annually or as often as considered desirable by both sides.  The
Principals of this dialogue will establish Expert Groups on specific issues
as considered desirable and appropriate.

5.   Foreign Office Consultations between the Under Secretary of State for
Political Affairs of the United States and Foreign Secretary of India will
continue.  The two leaders believe that close cooperation between the two
countries is a factor of stability in the politically and culturally
diverse and rapidly transforming Asia.  A Dialogue on Asian Security will
also be conducted as part of the Foreign Office Consultations.  The two
sides will also stay in close touch and consult on international democracy
initiatives.

6.   The two leaders consider combating international terrorism as one of
the most important global challenges.  They expressed satisfaction at the
establishment of the Joint Working Group on Counter-terrorism and its
productive first meeting in February 2000.  They agree that the Joint
Working Group should continue to meet regularly and become an effective
mechanism for the two countries to share information and intensify their
cooperation in combating terrorism.

7.   The two leaders see an enormous potential for enhancement of economic
and business relations between the two countries in the Knowledge Age.
They decided to institutionalize bilateral economic dialogue.  They will
keep themselves informed and follow developments in the bilateral economic
dialogue closely through a high-level coordinating group.  The coordinating
group will be led on the US side by the White House with the support of the
State Department, and on the Indian side by the Prime Minister's Office
with the support of the Ministry of External Affairs.

   The Coordinating Group will develop a common economic agenda for and
   undertake preparations for the Heads of Government meetings.  With broad
   inter-agency and inter-ministerial representations at senior official
   levels, it would convene regularly to facilitate close coordination on
   the various issues raised in the ministerial dialogues and ensure that
   discussions therein complement and reinforce broad economic and foreign
   policy objectives, including the deepening of bilateral cooperation on
   high technology and information technology issues.
   US-India Financial and Economic Forum:  The US Secretary of the Treasury
   and the Indian Minister of Finance will host a forum on finance and
   investment issues, macroeconomic policy and international economic
   developments at regular intervals.  Their meetings at the ministerial
   level would be supplemented by sub-Cabinet meetings and involve, as
   appropriate, the participation of the Securities and Exchange
   Commission, Federal Reserve, Council of Economic Advisors, and other
   officials of the US Government and the Securities and Exchange Board of
   India, Reserve Bank of India, and other officials of the Government of
   India.
   US-India Commercial Dialogue:  The US Secretary of Commerce and Minister
   of Commerce and Industry of India will lead a dialogue to deepen ties
   between the Indian and American Business communities.  The dialogue will
   encompass regular government-to-government meetings to be held in
   conjunction with private sector meetings.  Its aim will be to (a)
   facilitate trade, and (b) maximize investment opportunities across a
   broad range of economic sectors, including information technology,
   infrastructure, biotechnology, and services.  Participation will
   include, as appropriate, representatives of other Cabinet agencies and
   ministries on both sides.  Close contact will be maintained with
   business associations, and activities will be planned with the benefit
   of such private sector input, including the establishment of
   subcommittees to pursue specific projects or sectoral issues of mutual
   interest.
   US-India Working Group on Trade:  The United States Trade Representative
   and the Ministry of Commerce and other concerned Ministries/Departments
   of the Government of India will engage in regular discussion to enhance
   cooperation on trade policy.  As appropriate, individual trade issues
   could be examined in greater depth with the participation of other
   agencies with corresponding responsibilities and through creation of
   sub-groups.  The Group will serve as a locus of consultation on a broad
   range of trade-related issues, including those pertaining to the World
   Trade Organization.  The Group will receive inputs from the private
   sector (including trade policy issues identified in the US-India
   Commercial Dialogue) as appropriate.

8.   The two leaders consider cooperation between the two countries in
energy and environment an important part of their vision for the future.
They have agreed to set up a Joint Consultative Group on Clean Energy and
Environment.  The Group will hold periodic ministerial/high level meetings
as desirable and appropriate and will lay emphasis on collaborative
projects, developing and deploying clean energy technologies, public and
private sector investment and cooperation, and climate change and other
environmental issues.  The Co-conveners of the Group will be the Department
of State of the United States and the Ministry of External Affairs of
India.

9.   The two leaders believe that the strong scientific resources of the
two countries provide excellent opportunities for scientific collaboration
between them.  They agree to set up a US-India Science and Technology
Forum.  The Forum shall promote research and development, the transfer of
technology, the creation of a comprehensive electronic reference source for
US-India science and technology cooperation, and the electronic exchange
and dissemination of information on US-India science and technology
cooperation, and other programs consistent with the previous practice of
the US-India Foundation.

10.  Institutional dialogue in other areas will be considered as mutually
agreed.

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