Elisha Pulivarti/Washington DC
US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo’s announcement that India will be the Trusted Technology partner with America is promising to the SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) sectors in both the countries. Her current visit to India points to enhanced cooperation between the two countries, particularly in electronics and semiconductors fields. Of course, this will lead to jobs in the US and India.
Gina leading a delegation of top executives of 10 major US companies from electronic and semiconductor industries, which are interested in investing in India. Gina Raimondo and Indian Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal presided a India US Commercial Dialogue on March 10. This is useful for promoting not only investments but also transfer of technology in the sectors.
This dialogue is relaunched after a gap of three years. This dialogue is a process to increase bilateral trade between India and US, along with enhancing scope of cooperation to new areas – like defence, strategic technologies etc. Gina and Goyal oversaw signing of an MoU paving way for more US investments into India in electronics and semiconductors making. This is sort of free trade deal for the two countries.
SMEs mentioned in MoU
The MoU specifically mentioned SMEs as one of the focus areas for the commercial dialogue. Startups, SMEs, skill development and entrepreneurship in digital and emerging technologies are priority areas of the MoU. Needless to say, SMEs are integral to any major electronics and semiconductor manufacturing industry. These industries involve umpteen number of small units that supply components.
SMEs are the backbone and sources of innovations and job growth and engines that fuel our nation’s economy. SMEs represent over 90 per cent of the business population and 70 per cent of employment and 35 per cent of GDP in India. There are more than 32.5 million SMEs in the US and more than 60 million in India. The US-India SME Council is a premier small business advocacy initiative based out of Washington DC.
We from US India SME Council are happy over the unfolding developments during current tour of Gina Raimondo to India as it would strengthen ties between two largest and oldest democracies in the world. Just as Raimondo made it clear trade ties between US and India need to the decoupling of trade with China. We must look at this US -India trade push as a positive sign that benefits economies of the two countries.
(Elisha Pulivarti is CEO of US India SME Council based in Washington DC and writes regularly to Excel India on issues of geopolitics and international relations)