#Cover Story, #2017/2018, #December 2017

As 2017 draws to a close, we look at a number of steps taken by the Narendra Modi government to clean up processes and lay out a roadmap for faster growth.

It is never a wise thing to look back upon, and label a year when there’s still half a month to go for the New Year. Having got that caveat aside, it would be fair to call 2017 the year of clean-ups – when the Narendra Modi government decided to clean up the choke points that were hindering the economy from moving into a higher, more robust growth trajectory in the years to come.

#February 2017, #The Americas, #India-US, #December 2017

There are not too many countries towards whom the new United States President, Donald Trump, has shown a consistently friendly demeanour. India is one of them.

As Trump told Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his most recent phone conversation to New Delhi, he saw India as a “true friend”. India is seen, strategically, as a kindred spirit by President Trump and his team.

#February 2017, #India & China, #December 2017, #India & The World

Asian equations, specially between the two giant economies of China and India will be in focus with the installation of Donald Trump as the 45th US president.

Trump’s belligerent ‘America First’ foreign and commercial policy stance, will in all likelihood, force China to curb its manufactured goods exports to the US, with whom it has a whopping and patently unsustainable trade surplus of nearly half a trillion dollars! It is unlikely that even US MNCs, which have huge export bases in China, could prevail upon Trump to not push back imports from China. This should push Chinese exporters to look for alternate markets during the next five to 10 years, during which China completes its planned switch to greater reliance on domestic consumption. India, with its growing and potentially large domestic markets and long track record of trade deficits, would offer a tempting opportunity for Chinese exporters looking to divert their exports and utilising their installed capacities.

#December 2017, #Last Word

The BJP’s recent state election wins should encourage the government as it proves that good economics is being rewarded by voters.

After a month-long, fractious and often ill-tempered campaign during which some pundits forecast doom for the BJP, the ruling party in Gujarat emerged victorious with 99 seats in a House of 182 – winning a sixth straight term in office.

#December 2017, #India & The World

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a series of strategic visits during the year, including State Visits across Europe, the US and Israel. This snapshot of his official tours around the world captures the diplomatic strides made by India in 2017 and the regions of focus for 2018. His External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj, was also part of this diplomatic agenda, as was Indian President Ram Nath Kovind.

#FEATURE REGION, #October 2017

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has brought about a paradigm shift in India’s quest for oil, gas, uranium by forging close relations with the five ‘Stans’ – Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.

The controversial and much delayed Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline is finally getting a move on – a full 22 years after it was conceived.

Following the groundbreaking ceremony last December, India will host the next meeting of the Steering Committee which has been formed for the $7.6-billion, 1,814-km-long pipeline that will transport gas from the Central Asian republic of Turkmenistan to India to feed its power plants and meet its energy security needs.

#August 2017, #Last Word

The Indian PM has spelt out his vision for a New India ahead of the next General Election in the country.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, in past Independence Day addresses to the nation, announced grand flagship schemes that promise to transform India. So, one was expecting more of the same this year. Instead, the Prime Minister announced a vision – of a New India, that he urged all Indians to work towards, by 2022.

#August 2017, #The Americas

Donald Trump’s ambivalence on economic and strategic issues concerning India is coming in the way of taking bilateral ties to the next level.

If India and the US were Facebook friends, then many in the Indian establishment would be justified in describing the relationship as “It’s complicated.”

India is a “major defence ally” of the US, the economic relationship is vibrant, at least on the face of it, Washington has reiterated its support for India to be admitted into the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) as a full member and public statements by senior government officials on both sides continue to exude warmth.

#August 2017, #The Americas

A new publication and web resource on India-US relations delves into a new era of multi-dimensional bilateral ties.

“The relationship between India and America has overcome the ‘hesitations of history’.” This was a statement made by the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, at his joint address to the US Congress in 2016.

The “hesitation” refers to the phase where in a bipolar Cold War era India decided to adopt a foreign policy of non-alignment and India’s weak economy pre-1991 wasn’t helping the American cause either. Nevertheless, the relationship has now moved far away from that “hesitation” and in the last two decades has become reflective of what Undersecretary Nicholas Burns of the Bush administration had predicted: “Within a generation many Americans may view India as one of the most important strategic partners”.