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As it happened: PM Modi meets Prez Obama, holds talks at White House

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived at the White House on Tuesday to meet US President Barack Obama in a low-key nod to the improved ties between the world’s biggest democracies.

india Updated: Jun 07, 2016 23:51 IST
Modi-Obama meeting,Modi at White House,India-US ties
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with US President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington on Tuesday.(Twitter/MEA India)

US President Barack Obama and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday welcomed the start of preparatory work on six nuclear reactors in India, a key step in closing the first deal stemming from a US-India civil nuclear accord struck over a decade ago.

  • India, US Export-Import Bank “to work together toward a competitive financing package” for nuclear reactors: India-US joint statement
  • Site design of six nuclear reactors in India to begin “immediately”: India-US joint statement
  • Obama, Modi confirm Nuclear Power Corporation Of India and Westinghouse will finalise contractual arrangements by June 2017.
  • “India has made a name for itself as fastest growing economy in the world. Will work together for world’s peace and security” -- Modi
  • “We have discussed a range of issues of cooperation today from business and technology to governance” -- Modi
  • “India is a young country and we are aware of the talent it has. We will continue to work together in the future too” -- Obama
  • “India and USA have strong bonds” -- Obama
  • “Will meet again in G20 ,will fulfil dream of climate justice.Our friend Obama extended support to MTCR and NSG ; will always be grateful” -- Modi
  • “India is a young country, over 800 million of Indians below age of 35. Our youth power in partnership with US will serve mankind” -- Modi
  • “We are working shoulder to shoulder; we are proud. Will continue working together” --Modi
  • “Want to thank my close friend President Obama,we discussed a range of issues. Also thank US Congress for inviting me” -- Modi
  • “We discussed progress made on nuclear civil cooperation” -- Obama
  • “We discussed regional security issues; we wish to work together on cyber security” -- Obama
  • “I have fond memories of India when I took part in Republic Day” -- Obama

For Modi, Tuesday’s visit was a time to set the seal on what has been achieved and set the stage for what he hopes will be a mushrooming in US-India trade from $120 billion to $500 billion.

Read: Smart politics or true friendship? Understanding the Modi-Obama equation

For Obama, who will step down from office in January, it was a matter of his legacy -- friendship with India and inroads into its huge market are a victory for his so-called “pivot to Asia.”

Relations between the countries are not always easy -- India insists on staying out of formal alliances and forging its own course -- but both leaders can boast that ties have improved.

Modi was scheduled to meet with US business leaders and members of the three million strong Indian-American community after meeting Obama.

Officials played down the chances of major announcements during the visit, but noted that India is very close to a deal with US electric giant Westinghouse to build a nuclear plant.

Another potential arena for greater cooperation is in the military and security arena.

India has made the United States its main arms supplier -- spending $14 billion over the past five years -- but also spends heavily with French, Israeli and Russian suppliers.

The two countries are negotiating a Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA), although it is not clear whether a final draft will be ready for Modi to sign on his visit.

This arrangement, long-sought by Washington, will allow the two militaries to seek supplies and spare parts from each other’s bases.

Singh did not say whether agreement was imminent -- India also wants deals to acquire advanced US arms technology -- but noted that Indian and US troops now train together regularly.

With inputs from agencies

First Published: Jun 07, 2016 20:27 IST