Today's Paper

``Vast potential for more trade with U.S.''

Economic issues key to international relations, says Manmohan

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Noting that economic issues were the key to international relations, the Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, on Monday said there was a need for greater coordination in the Government to deal with the outside world.

For this, he said, the Government must devise a medium-to-long term strategy for the country's economic interaction with the world, with special focus on relations with its neighbours and major economic partners.

Chairing the first meeting of the Trade and Economic Relations Committee (TERC), Dr. Singh said: "Economic relations have come to increasingly influence strategic engagement. India's economic interaction with the world is still relatively limited and this must increase."

Amplifying the point further during the meeting which discussed issues pertaining to India-U.S. economic relations ahead of his visit to the U.S. in July this year, Dr. Singh said: "China's economic engagement with the U.S. is ten times that of India. There is vast potential for increased trade and investment relations with the U.S. We must consider how we can realise this potential."

Briefing newspersons here after the two-hour meeting, the Prime Minister's media advisor, Sanjaya Baru, quoted Dr. Singh as saying that economic issues had become the key to international relations and there was a need for a holistic view on this.

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