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United States confers 'Legion of Merit' award on Prime Minister Narendra Modi


The President of the United States of America conferred the highest decoration, The Legion of Merit, Degree Chief Commander, to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 21 December 2020.

The award is in recognition of the Prime Minister's steadfast leadership and vision for India's emergence as a global power, and exemplary contribution made by him for the advancement of the India-United States strategic partnership and promoting global peace and prosperity, a release issued by the Ministry of External Affairs said.

The Legion of Merit, in the highest degree of the Chief Commander, is a prestigious award conferred by the President of the United States, typically upon Heads of State or Heads of Government of other countries.

The award was received on behalf of the Prime Minister by the Ambassador of India to the United States Taranjit Singh Sandhu. At the ceremony, The Legion of Merit, Degree Chief Commander, was also awarded to the Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison, and former Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe.

#America #NarendraModi

Cabinet approves electricity sector related MoU between India, USA


The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its approval for Central Electricity Regulatory Commission's proposal for entering into a Memorandum of Understanding between Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC), India and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), United States of America (USA) for exchange of information and experiences in areas of mutual interest to both in the electricity sectors.

The MoU will help in improving the regulatory and policy framework for developing efficient wholesale power market and enhancing grid reliability.

The activities to be carried out under the MoU include the following:         

  1. Identify energy-related issues and develop topics and possible agendas for the exchange of information and regulatory practices in areas of mutual interest;
  2. Organize visits by Commissioners and/or staff to participate in activities at each other's facilities;
  3. Participate in seminars, visit, and exchanges;
  4. Develop programs of mutual interests and where appropriate hold these programs locally to enhance participation;
  5. When practical and of mutual interest, provide speakers on energy issues and other personnel (management or technical).

#India #America #UnionCabinet

Vice Chief of the Army Staff to visit US

Lt Gen SK Saini, Vice Chief of the Army Staff is proceeding on a visit to the United States of America from 17th to 20th of October 2020.  

The aim of the visit is to enhance military cooperation between both the armies, a Ministry of Defence release stated today. 

The Vice Chief of the Army Staff will visit the US Army Pacific Command (USARPRAC), the Army component of Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM) and exchange ideas extensively with the military leadership apart from witnessing training and equipment capabilities of US Army.  

Later, the Vice Chief of the Army Staff will also visit INDOPACOM where aspects of military cooperation and furthering military to military engagement including procurements, training in niche domains, joint exercises and capability building will be discussed, the release informed. 

The visit will further enhance the operational and strat level collaboration between both armies, which is emphasised by the fact India is participating in two joint exercises with the US despite COVID-19 restrictions. These are Yudh Abhyas (February 2021) and Vajra Prahar (March 2021), the release added.

#SKSaini #America #IndianArmy

Piyush Goyal urges American businesses to look at India as next investment destination

Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal has invited American businesses to look at India as their next investment destination, even as he reiterated that Indian Government is committed to being bold, open, and change, a government press release stated today.

Addressing the India Chamber of Commerce USA's Summit on Global Financial & Investment Leadership on Wednesday (7th October 2020) virtually, Mr Goyal said that the potential between the US and India is boundless.

"We are partners who trust each other and we can make rapid strides to provide a trusted source to American businesses to work with a country which is transparent, where there is rule-based trading and dialogue. The bilateral trade between US and India grew from USD 126 billion dollars in 2017 to USD 145 dollars in 2019. The target we have set of USD 500 billion dollars in the next five years is eminently doable," the minister added.

The Minister said that India today is moving out of the past into a mindset of high-quality products, greater global engagement, and greater share of world trade. "We are moving from red-tape to red-carpet. We are moving out of the shackles of the past into a more open and liberal foreign investment destination. As the Prime Minister has said, "We have to take the Indian economy out of command and control and take it towards plug and play," he added.

Describing the reforms being undertaken in the country, Mr Goyal said, "India is undertaking efforts to reform the Indian systems of governance, policies and laws around mining, space technology, defence, banking, financial sectors, labour and agriculture reforms. We have embarked on a new journey which will take India to levels never seen before. We are looking at logistics reform to bring down the cost of logistics. We are doing several tax reforms. We have insolvency laws in place. India's corporate tax is amongst the lowest in the world. My own Ministry is working at 'plug & play' & cluster development. We are looking at a genuine single-window system which makes it easy for companies & businesses to work in India. We are focusing on improved infrastructure. We promise faster registration, easier availability of infrastructure."

He said that a great reflection of India-US relation is the bilateral discussion that US Secretary of state Mike Pompeo and Indian Foreign Minister Dr S Jaishankar had in Tokyo on the sidelines of the QUAD and the fact that third India-US 2+2 dialogue is expected to take place later this month on 26th and 27th October, the release added.

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