News / Asia

Biden’s India Visit Is Key in Asia 'Rebalance' Strategy

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L) shakes hands with Indian Vice President Hamid Ansari as they pose for the media before a meeting in New Delhi, India, July 23, 2013.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L) shakes hands with Indian Vice President Hamid Ansari as they pose for the media before a meeting in New Delhi, India, July 23, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
Aru Pande
— U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is in India for a four-day visit aimed at strengthening economic and defense ties. The U.S. sees India as an important part of the Obama administration's "rebalance" toward Asia.
 
Biden’s visit is the first to India by an American vice president in three decades, and follows U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s trip by just a few weeks.
 
The renewed U.S. attention on India in recent months comes less than two years after the Obama administration named the South Asian country as a key player in its pivot, or rebalance, toward the Asia-Pacific region.
 
Gopalan Balachandran, a consulting fellow with the New Delhi-based Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses, said, “It’s not as if Asia economies are growing a hundred times and the rest are all standing still, and you say ‘okay, I will keep [seeing] Asia the same way like I did 10 years ago or even 15 or 20 years ago.’ It’s not possible. To some extent, the rebalancing is necessitated by changes in the global environment, both in politics and the economy."

Working strategically

In an interview with the Times of India newspaper this week, Biden noted that the “winding down of two wars” has allowed the United States to “turn to opportunities that reflect the realities of the fast-changing world.”
 
He spoke of the need for India, China and the United States to work together to advance common economic and security interests.
 
C. Raja Mohan, with the Observer Research Foundation, said both New Delhi and Washington share the common goal of not wanting an Asia that is dominated by China.
 
“But at the same time, India is not going to be a traditional ally of the U.S. eager to balance or counter China’s efforts. I think the shared objective for the U.S. and India is how do we structure a stable balance of power in Asia - and between that - there is much room for India and the U.S. to collaborate,” said Mohan.
 
This potential collaboration is a focus of the American vice president’s visit, as Biden aims to deepen economic, defense and energy ties. Key among the goals is to boost bilateral trade that currently stands at $100 billion.  

Advancing mutual interests

Increasing economic cooperation is not without its challenges. Some American companies have expressed frustration at what they see as India’s unfriendly investment climate. For its part, India has called for a U.S. immigration policy that will make it easier for highly skilled Indian workers to enter the American job market.
 
Despite these hurdles, Mohan said the U.S.-India relationship has come a long way in the last decade.
 
“If anybody would have said that India-U.S. cooperation would be as strong and as dynamic as it is today, few would have believed this proposition at that point of time. The fact is that because expectations have risen so much, there are disappointments on both sides," said Mohan.
 
Analysts say while such disagreements may not be resolved, Biden’s visit will go a long way toward consolidating progress and restoring political trust between the two nations.

Biden's schedule on Tuesday includes talks with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is expected to make his own visit to the United States later this year.
 
Biden then will travel to Mumbai on Wednesday to give a policy speech at the Bombay Stock Exchange and meet with business leaders before leaving for Singapore on Thursday.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ashim kumar Chatterjee from: Delhi
July 24, 2013 6:13 AM
Biden visit is a middle page news in leading newspaper and 4th or 5th item in newscasts in TV channels. I visited VOA and find it is no different. This speaks volumes about the state of affairs. While Biden was shaking hands and saying hi how are you, substantive joint secretary level talks were going on between Chinese & Indian officials for defense cooperation. And yes - one does not know how true it was- one read a report which said China was willing to invest US $ 125 billions in Andhra Pradesh alone. India is the balancing factor in Asia. US India cooperation in defense, civil nuclear deal and technology can be attractive if US invests 6 trillion, which it spent in Afpak war on India's terms. Consumer is king.


by: Harry from: Texas
July 23, 2013 11:21 AM
Bilateral relationship with India should not follow the old model of domination but of mutual respect and benefit for both countries. The complaint by business is based on the old model; change to a model of mutual benefit and you will earn the most important friendship ever.


by: JohnL
July 23, 2013 10:49 AM
Only a government-funded media entity could find significance in a visit of our vice president to India. As a long time analyst who once taught at Punjab University and wrote a book about Indian economic development I can confidently assure your readers that the visit means nothing, will be quickly forgotten, and will have absolutely no impact on anything. Until India massively reforms its bureaucracy and regulations India will continue to stagnate economically at the very bottom of the world's economy and export the best and the brightest of its people. The so-called "growth" reported by the government is similar to the growth reported by the old soviet union, a total fabrication with each ministry reporting that it exceeded its goals under the latest five year plan. Nothing will change until India either elects a strong leader or the people say "enough" and there is a revolution. The latter is more likely.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid