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Purpose of Indo-US Strategic Dialogue is to think big: Blake

world Updated: May 29, 2010 08:48 IST

The main purpose of the next week Indo-US Strategic Dialogue in Washington is to think big and think strategically and not to focus much on deliverables, a top US official has said.

"There will be deliverables; I don't want to talk about the deliverables now. But we are really not focused that much on deliverables.

The purpose of this dialogue is really to think strategically and, again, to get the key people who work on these issues together to think ahead to the (US) President's visit and to think strategically about what we can do," Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Robert Blake said on Friday.

"It's not so much to have a review of all the things that we have done. We know what we have done. It's really to think ahead.

And when we have all of these senior-level officials together in one place, we have to take maximum advantage of their time and, again, use it productively," Blake said.

"So that's the real purpose of the strategic dialogue. It is not to supplant the 18 different dialogues that we have, headed by all these different cabinet ministers on both sides.

Those will be really the areas during those dialogues where they will announce deliverables of one sort or another," Blake argued, thus trying to tone down the expectations from the meeting.

The Indian delegation comprising of several ministers and top officials would be led by External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, while the US side would be led by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The Indian delegation is scheduled to arrive on June one. On June 2, Blake said the two delegations will have both private sector and government activities.

The US-India Business Council will be hosting its 35th annual meeting, which will be addressed by Obama's top economic advisor Larry Summers and the Education Secretary.

And then on the government-to-government level, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns, and his counterpart Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, will oversee a very wide-ranging foreign policy dialogue that will cover Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Middle East, probably China, and many other topics.

However, the main dialogue would be on June 3 at the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department, which will be chaired by Clinton and Krishna.