Asia ‘a region with tremendous promise and potential’ faces many challenges ranging from economic development to defeating terrorism and counter violent extremism, Nisha Desai Biswal, assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asian Affairs, said on Friday.

"Despite these challenges, we've never been more optimistic about the future of Asia and the role the United States and India will play in advancing prosperity and stability in the region," she said at 2014 FICCI-IIFA Global Business Forum in Tampa, Florida.

The business forum was a joint event of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) ahead of the first ever IIFA Awards event being held in the US on Saturday.

"One reason is India's growing economic connectivity eastward with Bangladesh, Burma, and Southeast Asia," Biswal said speaking on the "US and India Global Partners in the Global Economy."And we see promise in links westward with Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia," she added.

Describing these linkages as vital to the prosperity and stability of Asia, she said US was committed to supporting economic linkages that will cultivate new markets and knit these countries even closer together and make them more integrated with the global economy.

Since prosperity in South Asia hinges on dynamic growth of its economic powerhouse, India, Biswal said US ‘is committed to working with India to fully unlock the true potential of our economic ties’.

"India needs a transparent, straightforward way of attracting foreign investment, offering private capital a way to share in India's opportunity," she said.

"There must be a welcoming business environment that allows every dollar of investment to work efficiently. India's future prosperity will also depend on one of our shared strengths - innovation," Biswal said.

“That is why we are so excited about US-India Technology Summit and Expo in November of this year in Delhi. India-US relationship is also flourishing at the state and city level,” Biswal said noting ‘our cities and states are partnering more extensively than ever before, helping plant even deeper and stronger roots for our partnership’.

"A growing number of states and cities are tailoring their international outreach efforts for India with delegations from Arizona, Iowa, Indianapolis and San Francisco visiting the subcontinent over the last year," she said.

Declaring that she was ‘bullish’ on this relationship because she believed in the strength and vibrancy of the two countries, Biswal said, “I know there is no challenge that we can't address, no problem that we can't solve when we bring our two societies together.”


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