'No big' outcomes expected from Obama's India trip

Image caption,
Mr Obama begins a four-day trip of India on Saturday

India is not expecting any "big bang" results from the forthcoming visit of US President Barack Obama, India's foreign secretary has said.

Nirupama Rao said Mr Obama's visit will expand strategic ties between the two countries leading to a more "productive" partnership.

Mr Obama begins a four-day trip on Saturday when he arrives in the western city of Mumbai (Bombay).

India and the US have forged closer defence and trade ties in recent years.

"We are not at a stage in our relationship perhaps for another big bang but certainly there will be positive outcomes [from the visit]," Ms Rao told a meeting in Delhi.

"We will see concrete and significant steps in wide range of areas that will expand the long-term strategic framework in a way that we can create productive partnership for the mutual benefit and [will be] equally important to give substantive content and shape to the global strategic partnership," she said.

Ms Rao said that ties between the two countries, including trade and counter-terrorism, had deepened in recent months.

Trade between India and the US was worth about $40bn in 2008 - still significantly lesser than US trade with other partners like China and Europe.

In 2008, the two countries signed a deal for civil nuclear co-operation.

India gained access to US nuclear technology and fuel in return for inspections of its civilian, but not military, nuclear facilities.

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