Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal to meet Elon Musk, Tesla’s India foray on agenda; will also interact with POTUS

Reena Bhardwaj (ANI)–

Union Commerce and Industries Minister Piyush Goyal is scheduled to visit the US from November 13-17 to attend the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) ministerial meeting and has been invited to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in San Francisco. On the day of his arrival, the minister is scheduled to meet with Tesla chief Elon Musk, sources familiar with the plans told ANI.

The meeting between Goyal and Musk will stress Tesla’s plans of foraying into India and the manufacture of more Tesla components in the country.

FILE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk in San Jose, California on September 26, 2015

This meeting comes almost four months after Musk met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New York City and expressed his interest in making significant investments in the country.

The Union minister will also interact with two top US officials, including US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai, to strengthen the partnership between the two nations and strengthen trade and economic ties.

The Commerce minister will also interact with ministers from other IPEF partner countries on the sidelines of the IPEF ministerial.

Goyal and Raimondo will also jointly participate in the United States-India Business Council (USIBC) event on the margins of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economic leaders meeting.

“We’re going to be talking in that meeting with a number of companies, USIBC members, but also with startups in the innovation space to talk about how to foster even more unicorn-like startups between the United States and India,” Atul Keshap, president, USIBC, told ANI.

APEC in San Francisco will see some of the most influential world leaders and business executives convene, discuss vital issues, and collectively shape the trajectory of a region that holds immense importance for global prosperity, stability, and sustainability. The summit programme will highlight the potential of collaboration and fresh thinking to build the future through a focus on Sustainability, Inclusion, Resilience, and Innovation.

This year’s summit will also bring together 20+ leading CEO’s representing companies such as Microsoft Pfizer, Uber, Citibank, Fedex, Exxon Mobil Corp to name a few, many of which, have deep economic interests in the Asia Pacific region and China in particular.

“So for the United States to invite India to this APEC summit in San Francisco, to me is a really big deal. India is not a member of APEC, although it asked to become a member back in 1991 when APEC was formed. And I think this administration is actually putting a lot of effort into trying to reach out to India to include it in our trade efforts around the world. Look at the Indopacific economic framework,” the former diplomat said.

At this summit, Goyal will have a brief informal interaction with President Joe Biden and the former will also be a part of the APEC group photo. Biden will also welcome other APEC leaders, including from Canada’s PM Trudeau and China’s President Xi Jinping.

While in the Bay Area of San Francisco, Goyal will also interact with eminent businesspeople and industry leaders.

President and Chief Executive Officer of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), Dr Mukesh Aghi, speaking on Union Minister Piyush Goyal’s visit to the US, said, “Well, this is on the sidelines of Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) and APEC. USISPF in an event will be bringing in US technology companies, from Al to chipmaking to cybersecurity, and exploring how we can collaborate, how we can get some of these companies to come and invest in India. We’re also looking at Indian startups to see how we can bring them to the US. So it’s a two way trade, it’s a two way transfer of technology. So that’s the whole objective of the event taking place with Minister Goyal.”

The Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) was launched jointly by the US and other partner countries of the Indo-Pacific region on May 23, 2022 in Tokyo.

India joined the IPEF and Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the launch event along with US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, and other leaders from partner countries.

The IPEF seeks to strengthen economic engagement among partner countries with the goal of advancing growth, peace, and prosperity in the region.

The framework is structured around four pillars relating to Trade (Pillar I); Supply Chains (Pillar II); a clean economy (Pillar III); and Fair Economy (Pillar IV).

The meeting would focus on strengthening economic cooperation and enhancing resilience, sustainability, inclusiveness, economic growth, fairness, and competitiveness in the Indo-Pacific region.

India is committed to a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region and would work towards deepening economic cooperation among partners for the growth and prosperity of the region. The framework is inclusive and allows flexibility to partner countries to associate with pillars based on their respective priorities, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry said in a statement.

During the visit, the minister would interact with the CEOs of multinationals, the Indian diaspora, the startup community, including venture capitalists, and academia to propel existing trade and investment relations between the Indian and US business communities.

The visit would focus on emphasising the attractiveness of India as the most preferred investment destination.

Goyal will hold discussions on the need and potential for closer industrial collaborations, further expand partnerships, and establish trade and investment linkages across priority areas.

Curated interactions with the startup ecosystem and the Indian diaspora that would help in empowering and mentoring their growth and expansion are also on the agenda. The minister will also launch the Institute of Chartered Accounts of India’s (ICAI) two representative offices in the USA.

Goyal is expected to interact with globally renowned technology, entrepreneurship, and academic communities in the Bay Area, specifically in Silicon Valley, to undertake focused discussions with American companies looking to invest or expand in India across sectors: electronics (including semiconductors), technology, fintech, and more.

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