Washington, (Agencies): United States is on a trade mission to India which will be starting on Sunday and seeks the sale of US fighter jets and other advanced technology products.

With the easing of export controls for India, the United States will press New Delhi to buy US fighter jets and other advanced technology products.

"That export control announcement has really opened the door for increased high-technology trade and cooperation between the United States and India" US Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said on Thursday.

"The purpose is our trade missio is to take advantage of that open door," said Locke who is leading 24 US companies including aero space majors Boeing and Lockheed Martin and several nuclear power companies on the trade mission.

The tour, which follows President Barack Obama's trip to India in November, "underscores the importance we attach to the commercial relationship between our two countries," Locke said.

The two dozen US companies also include GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, Westinghouse Electric Company, which is a division of Toshiba Corp, Transco Products, NuScale Power and Exelon Nuclear Partners, which are expecting to capitalise on the landmark US-India civil nuclear deal signed in 2008.

The trade mission came on ground after the last week's announcement of lifting a 12-year-old export control ban on nine Indian space and defence-related companies, removing them from the so-called Entity List in a move expected to drive hi-tech trade and forge closer strategic ties with India.

Locke will be attending the Aero India show at Bangalore on Tuesday, where Boeing and Lockheed who are both competing for a $11 billion deal to sell 126 new fighter jets to Indian Air Force, will show off their latest wares with other military aircraft manufacturers.

Besides Boeing's F/A-18 Super Hornet and Lockheed's F-16, France's Dassault Rafale, Russia's MiG-35, Sweden's Saab JAS-39 Gripen and the Eurofighter Typhoon, produced by a consortium of European companies, are in the competition.

Locke said it was "a high priority" for the US government to press India to buy the planes from the US. But he would also be insisting for other US military and civil aviation sales at the aerospace show where the US plans to have the largest foreign presence.