The personal chemistry between the two leaders could prove as important as policy in setting the tone for the future.
As Modi hailed the United States as his country’s primary partner in its rapid social and economic transformation, Trump paid tribute to the Indian leader for overseeing growth rates which are faster than any other major economy in the world.
India’s trading relationship with the U.S.is especially critical to Modi, with exports to the US providing India’s largest surplus with a trading partner – more than $24 billion in 2016 – for a country that ran a $105 billion deficit that year.
During public remarks, per Business Insider, President Trump said of Modi, “I enjoyed our very productive conversation this afternoon, and look forward to its continuation tonight at dinner”.
He says the two countries “agree on most things” and jokes that “by the end of the day we’ll agree on everything”.
“I will also call on King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and meet Queen Maxima”, he had said in a Facebook post before leaving on his three-nation trip. “I have a feeling”, he joked. Such moves are likely to be welcomed by United States foreign policy chiefs, who have underlined the need for additional information sharing in the ongoing fight against ISIS. That prompted sharp denials from New Delhi.
Mr. Trump noted that India would be joining the US and Japan in the largest ever naval exercise in the Indian Ocean.
Meanwhile, the State Department has approved a possible sale of C-17 transport aircraft to India’s government. In a concrete indication of that, the United States is set to offer a $2bn sale of US-made unarmed drones to help in surveillance of the Indian Ocean.
Speaking from the Rose Garden, neither Trump nor Modi Trump -who represent the second-largest and largest democracies in the world, respectively – took questions from the media. “Our aim is the strengthening of India and the US, two great democracies in the world”.
Trump’s proposed overhaul of a US visa program used by thousands of Indian software engineers to work in the United States also has caused concern in New Delhi.
While Modi is touting a “Make in India” campaign, Trump is all about “America First”.
Modi and Trump spoke in the Rose Garden Monday after a bilateral meeting with senior members of their administrations.
Modi came to Washington looking to revitalize a relationship that had flagged as Trump looked to build a strong relationship with India’s rival, China. Previous year the US trade deficit with India neared $31 billion. India has its own concerns, including over regulatory barriers faced by its producers of generic medicinal drugs.
“There is no mention of the H1B visas, which has been the singular biggest irritant in the Indo-U.S. relationship”.
Your accomplishments have been vast, Trump said.
The president’s name is on a Trump Tower property in Mumbai and he spoke warmly of India during his presidential campaign past year.
Heaping praises on Prime Minister Modi, Trump said that he had been reading a lot about him and that he would want to congratulate him for the exemplary leadership he has shown, primarily, economically.
Syed Salahuddin (also known as Mohammed Yusuf Shah) was designated as a global terrorist.
And then, of course, there’s climate change. New Delhi was irked by Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris accord.