The US-India Business Council (USIBC) and the Coalition for Partnership with India have applauded the approval of the legislation on the Indo-US nuclear deal by the House of Representatives and urged the Senate to give it a similar resounding vote.
"The Act catalyses the convergence of the world's two great democracies for the 21st century to strengthen non-proliferation, democracy, economic development and military cooperation," said Ron Somers, president of USIBC.
"USIBC looks forward to a similar resounding vote of confidence in the bill and the US-India strategic partnership in the US Senate in the coming weeks," he added.
The civilian nuclear boycott of India by the US for the over three decades has kept the countries estranged across a wide spectrum of pivotal bilateral issues, said the Coalition, an association comprising American businesses, academic institutions, associations, think-tanks, and like-minded individuals supporting a deeper strategic partnership with India.
The India nuclear bill, if passed by the Senate, will mark the end of this unfortunate estrangement, said the body which was formed as a support group to further Indo-US relationship embodied in the July 18, 2005, Joint Statement signed by President George W Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, including the sharing of civilian nuclear technology with India.
The House vote is a landmark in promoting the Indo-US strategic partnership for the 21st century, every bit as pivotal to the security of the US as was then president Richard Nixon's opening to China, it added.
The legislation advances the energy, economic, and environmental security of the US. Projected supplies to India's nuclear energy market by US companies will create tens of thousands of American jobs and billions in additional revenues for American businesses, the Coalition said.
The mutual trust engendered by the passage of the 'Nuclear Cooperation Promotion Act' will inevitably spill over into non-nuclear sectors of India's booming economy, creating rich opportunities for US companies in infrastructure, aircraft, military procurement, banking, insurance, pensions and retail.
India's middle class of 300 million consumers is expected to double in several years, creating an enormous new Indian demand for US goods and services, the coalition said.