US President Donald Trump urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to do more to
relax trade barriers in India which is affecting US exports to the sub
"I deeply appreciate your strong commitment to the enhancement of our
bilateral relations," PM Modi told Mr Trump. "I am sure that under
your leadership a mutually beneficial strategic partnership will gain new
strength, new positively, and will reach new heights."
President Trump also was warm but made clear he sees a need for more
balance in the US-India trade relationship in keeping with his campaign promise
to expand American exports and create more jobs at home. Last year the US trade
deficit with India neared $31 billion.
Donald Trump said he would like a trading relationship that is "fair
and reciprocal." "It is important that barriers be removed to the
export of US goods into your markets and that we reduce our trade deficit with
your country," he said.
President Trump said he was pleased about SpiceJet's recent order of 100
new American planes and that the United States looked forward to exporting more
energy, including major long-term contracts to purchase American natural gas.
These energy contracts "are being negotiated and we will sign - trying
to get the price up a little bit," Mr Trump said.
President Trump did not mention US
differences with India on immigration and the Paris climate accord. "The
future of our partnership has never looked brighter," Mr Trump said.
As they met, a Pentagon agency said the US State Department has approved
the possible sale to India of a Boeing C-17 transport aircraft with an
estimated cost of $366 million.
Later, President Trump and PM Modi had a working dinner, the first time
Donald Trump has played host to a foreign dignitary at a White House dinner.