India-US relationship to focus on five Es

Washington, Nov 26 ( Economy, energy, environment, education and empowerment — the India-US relationship will accord new emphasis to these areas, says Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, adding that ties in defence, security and counter-terrorism will be consolidated.

Addressing the Indian American community at a reception hosted here Wednesday by the Indian Ambassador to the US, Meera Shankar, a day after his summit meeting with President Barack Obama, Manmohan Singh said the two had “met at a time when our relationship has matured into a strong strategic partnership of global dimension”.

“We had extremely good discussions on a wide range of bilateral, regional and global issues,” he said, telling the community about his first detailed discussion in a bilateral setting. “I found in him a great deal of respect for India and its values, and a strong commitment to this relationship.”

“We have, I believe, laid the foundation for consolidating the gains in our relationship. We are establishing new directions in the next phase of our relationship that will enable us to meet the challenges of the 21st century,” Manmohan Singh said.

“Our relationship will see a new emphasis on five Es — economy, energy, environment, education and empowerment — even as we further strengthen our ties in defence, security and counter-terrorism.”

The prime minister added: “We will also harness our natural synergies in science and technology, education and research to advance food security, improve healthcare, develop green technologies and create the human resources for the future.”

Appreciating the enormous contribution “your creativity, your hard work, and your good citizenship have played in bringing our two nations together”, Manmohan Singh said: “Relations with the United States will remain one of the important pillars of our foreign policy”.

India, the prime minister said, sees the United States as an important partner for meeting its national development goals and in creating a global environment marked by consensus, co-existence and cooperation.

“Our agenda of bilateral cooperation is extremely wide-ranging,” he said, as it derives “its vitality from recognition of the enormous potential for mutually beneficial cooperation and a sense of shared responsibility to work towards addressing global challenges”.