Washington: Describing the US as an important partner in its development efforts, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna has said for India, it will remain "a relationship of great priority and importance" in the 21st century.

"As we look at the priorities for India's foreign policy in the decades ahead, we see not only convergence of interests with the United States, but also a belief in the importance of a strong partnership between our two great democracies in achieving our shared goals," he said Friday.

"It is this recognition that has led to an extraordinary political investment in the two countries in transforming India-US relations and in establishing a durable and broad-based framework of a global strategic partnership," Krishna said.

He was speaking on "India's Foreign Policy Priorities for the 21st Century" at the launch of the "Brown-India Initiative" at Brown University, an American private Ivy League research university in Providence, Rhode Island.

An interdisciplinary hub for the study of contemporary India, the initiative aims to produce first-rate academic research, and to contribute to public discourse on, and in, India through talks, events, and the convergence of figures from diverse walks.

Krishna said the success of India-US partnership will not only contribute to the prosperity in the two countries, but, in a world of great flux and diversity, it will be a model of international partnership and a factor of global and regional peace, security and stability.

"For India, it will remain a relationship of great priority and importance in the 21st century," he said.

Another key priority for India, Krishna said would be to "seek to further reform multilateral institutions such as the United Nations, including the Security Council, World Bank and IMF to reflect contemporary realities and to improve their ability to address new challenges".

But the foremost priority of India's foreign policy will be to create a favourable external environment for the pursuit of collective prosperity and the individual welfare of all the Indian people, Krishna said.

"Our foreign policy will, therefore, be an instrument of our development, but also a vehicle to fulfil our global responsibilities," he said.

Another major priority for India's foreign policy will be the creation of an area of peace and prosperity in South Asia, Krishna said noting for more than three decades the north-western parts of the subcontinent have seen much turbulence, and conflict has affected not only India but the entire world.

"Our vision seeks political stability, economic modernization and regional integration of the region," he said."This will enable India to reconnect more closely with Central Asia, and also contribute to stability and prosperity in inter-linked South and Central Asian regions," Krishna said.

India, US to enhance renewable energy cooperation

India and the US are setting up a group to discuss financing options for encouraging energy generation through renewable sources as they explore possibilities of large scale cooperation in integration of renewables.

The decision to set up the group was taken here Friday at the just concluded India-US energy dialogue co-chaired by B.K. Chaturvedi, member, Planning Commission of India and US Energy Secretary Steven Chu.

Indian Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai, US Deputy Energy Secretary Daniel Poneman and other senior officials from both sides were present during the dialogue, according to an Indian Embassy news release.

The dialogue noted the enormous trade and investment opportunities, which have been opened up with discovery of US shale gas, it said.

While noting the investments made in this sector by Indian companies and the  permission granted to Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) for export of LNG from Sabine Pass terminal in US to India, the dialogue discussed the impact of relatively less expensive LNG imports from US to India, on the Indian  power sector and prospects of growth in India.
The dialogue also stressed the need for both countries to actively enhance generation of energy from renewable and low carbon resources, the embassy said.

In this context, the possibilities of large scale cooperation in integration of renewables with the grid and storage technologies were discussed.

The two sides also decided to engage in further cooperation in the utilisation of carbon dioxide, released through carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) in alternative uses, such as fertiliser manufacture, enhanced oil recovery and other such methodologies in order to make CCS commercially viable.

The dialogue agreed to the formation of a new working group on 'low carbon growth' for assessing the carbon dioxide emissions from different industries and for initiating steps to reduce such emissions, the embassy release said.

Both sides expressed satisfaction at the progress made during the dialogue process, including in the working groups and industry roundtable and reiterated their respective commitments to continue the process of enhancing energy co-operation, it said.

Earlier four working groups - on oil and gas, coal, power and energy efficiency, new technologies and renewable energy - met here September 25-26 to  discuss a wide variety of issues including cooperation in electrical grids, cleaner fossil fuel, and energy efficiency.

(Agencies)

Latest News from World News Desk