New body launched to promote India-US business ties | india-news | Hindustan Times
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New body launched to promote India-US business ties

The announcement came a day after John Chambers met and briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the new body.

india Updated: Aug 02, 2017 23:54 IST
Yashwant Raj
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hugs US President Donald Trump during his visit to the US recently.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hugs US President Donald Trump during his visit to the US recently.(Reuters)

Formalising their split from the US-India Business Council (USIBC), its erstwhile members have floated a new outfit, the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum, to promote better business ties between the two countries.

“What we are announcing today is an organisation redesigned for the future,” John Chambers, the executive chairman of Cisco Systems Inc, who is also chairing the USISPF, told reporters in New Delhi, according to Reuters.

The announcement came a day after Chambers met and briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the new body.

The USIBC management team led by Mukesh Aghgi has also joined the USISPF.

“India is moving faster than any other country in the last three years,” Chambers said. “India used to be known as a very slow follower, and now it's a fast innovator.”

Twenty-nine members of the USIBC board, comprising CEOs of some top American companies, had voted late last month to sever ties with the US chamber of commerce, the parent body, laying bare years of simmering tensions.

The chamber and the council had serious differences over some policy issues, going back several years — on market access, free trade matters and intellectual property rights, according to several past and present affiliates of the council.

The chamber joined a group of business bodies that called on the new Trump administration and congress in February to “use all available channels to ensure fair play for businesses, investors, and entrepreneurs across the United States, and to support Indian efforts that align with these goals”.

Several past and present USIBC officials have said they have felt “uncomfortable” by the chamber’s aggressive position on these issues, that had included asking the US trade representative to punish India with punitive trade measures.

The US chamber of commerce said in response to the announcement of the new body: “The USIBC and its staff continue their hard work on key issues affecting the critical relationship between our two countries.”

“We continue to receive strong support from our member companies as we focus our efforts on strengthening commercial ties. We will have more to say in the weeks ahead.”