For First Time, US Will Join Vibrant Gujarat Summit as Partner Country

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For First Time, US Will Join Vibrant Gujarat Summit as Partner Country

US Secretary of State John Kerry speaks before a working lunch at the State Department in Washington, DC, on December 10, 2014. (Agence France-Press photo)

Washington:  US Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to India this week to join the mega investment forum in Gujarat and pave the way for an upcoming visit by US President Barack Obama.

Mr Kerry will on Saturday attend the global investors summit being held in Ahmedabad in the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki announced.

It is the first time that the United States will join the Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit as a partner country, Ms Psaki said.

Vibrant Gujarat is a biennial summit first launched in 2003 to attract foreign investment.

The move comes as the United States is still trying to repair relations with India after a very public diplomatic spat erupted in late 2013 and plunged ties to their lowest level in early 2014.

"The Secretary will join leading US business executives and innovators at the summit to highlight the critical role that US technology plays in supporting sustainable economic growth across India," Ms Psaki told reporters.

The trip would also boost trade and investment between the two countries, she said.

President Obama has accepted an invite to be Chief Guest at the  Republic Day parade on January 26.  He will be the first sitting US president to visit India twice.

In November, Delhi and Washington also settled a bitter row over food subsidies that had threatened to derail a WTO pact to ease global trade barriers.

Two-way trade between the US and India currently stands at $100 billion and the countries aim to boost the figure to $500 billion but have set no deadline.



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