By Arun Kumar
Washington, June 4 (IANS) India and the US have agreed to intensify their anti-terror cooperation, deepen defence and security cooperation and expand trade and investment as they set out to shape a global partnership to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
"India is an indispensable responsible partner and a trusted friend," US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Thursday as the two countries concluded their first ever strategic dialogue encompassing counter-terrorism, defence, education, energy, agriculture and climate change.
"We believe that a rising India is good for the US and good for the world," she said.
"Our two nations, great democracies, dynamic inter-connected economies and engines of progress, understand that our futures in this century are linked."
India's External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna, who led a high-powered team to the US said India considered its "strategic partnership with the US as one of our key foreign policy priorities".
India believed that "our cooperation is not only for great mutual benefit, but we can work together to make a significant contribution to global peace, prosperity and stability in the 21st century", Krishna said.
The two sides, he said, agreed to further intensify their counter-terrorism cooperation noting "terrorist groups operating as a syndicate leverage each other's assets and strengths".
The two sides also discussed steps that they should take "to further deepen our growing defence and security cooperation, including defence trade and collaboration", he said.
Clinton announced that Indian ministers and US cabinet secretaries will meet with members of the US-India Business Council in Washington June 22 to see what specific steps the two governments can take to expand trade and investment.