Barack Obama, 44th president of America visited India in November 2010. He was the 6th U.S. President to visit India. He addressed a joint session of the Parliament of India. In a major policy shift Obama declared U.S. support for India’s permanent membership of United Nations Security Council. Calling India-U.S. relationship a defining partnership of 21st century he also announced removal of export control restrictions on several Indian companies and concluded trade deals worth US$10 billion which are expected to create 50,000 jobs in the U.S. during this visit. In a joint statement Prime Minister Singh and President Obama concluded that their meeting is a historic milestone as they seek to elevate the India-U.S. strategic partnership to a new level for the benefit of their nations and the entire mankind.The visit was part of a 9 day trip to Asia which included stopovers in Indonesia, South Korea and Japan.
Obama was accompanied by a delegation of 200 business leaders. Business deals worth about US$15 billion. He announced removal of export control restrictions on India. Indian Space Research Organisation, Bharat Dynamics Limited and Defence Research and Development Organisation were among organizations removed from a U.S. list of restricted entities. Obama declared U.S. support for India’s permanent membership to the UN Security council. USA also announced support for Indian membership in four multilateral non proliferation groups including Nuclear Suppliers Group, Wassenaar Arrangement, Australia Group and Missile Technology Control Regime saying that India had agreed to meeting requirements for membership of all groups.
An MoU for cooperation in setting up a Global Center for Nuclear Energy Partnership, an MoU to establish a India-U.S. Energy Cooperation Program, an MoU on Shale Gas Resources and an MoU for the establishment and operation of a Global Disease Detection Center in India – were signed between US and India during his visit.
The visit was in response to an invitation extended by Indian Prime minister Manmohan Singh was announced by Obama in June 2010. Obama visit was aimed at increasing American exports to India and reducing barriers to Indian market. Quoting Max Müller Obama had said “Whatever sphere of the human mind you may select for your special study, whether it be language, or religion, or mythology, or philosophy, whether it be law or customs, primitive art or science, you have to go to India. Because, some of the most valuable and instructive material of the history of man are treasured up in India and India only.”