Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources Geoffrey Pyatt in a meeting with Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas / Image- X/@HardeepSPuri
Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources, Geoffrey Pyatt, recently said he is confident about the potential for the U.S. and India to continue building on what he described as one of the “most important” energy and energy security relations in the world.
Pyatt, who was in India in January for a three-city visit, made the comments during an online international media briefing on February 5.
“I come back from this trip maximally bullish about the prospect for the United States and India to do even more together,” Pyatt said. While he acknowledged that momentum might slow down as 2024 is an election year for both countries, he maintained that the progress is going to continue through the natural political cycles of both democracies.
During his India visit, Pyatt spoke on two panels at the India-US Forum, with a focus on shared energy priorities along with other challenges. He also met with senior officials to discuss the shared agenda around energy transition, reliable supply chains, and energy security.
The US official further said the Indian and U.S. bureaucracy have the same strategic objectives and are aligned in terms of the work that the private sectors and companies are doing. Both countries have an “enormous stake” in the success of each other’s transitions, he said.
U.S.-India trade relationship ‘big and puffed’ like puri not flat like chapati: Pyatt
In February 2002, U.S. Ambassador to India Robert D. Blackwill, in a speech about the U.S.-India economic relationship, had said U.S. trade flows into India were as “flat as a chapati.” Direct Foreign Investments (FDI) approvals from the U.S. into India during the late 90s and early aughts had severely dipped, and so had the actual inflows due to lack of reforms and government policies.
Pyatt, who was working at the U.S. Embassy in Delhi when Amb. Blackwill delivered the speech, recalled the “flat as chapati” phrase, and said that in the present day, “It’s become big and puffed up like a big puri…”
Pyatt further highlighted that the countries are not involved in any kind of free trade agreement negotiations currently but important negotiations about further strengthening the trade relations are ongoing. Despite the election cycle, first in India, and later in the year in the U.S., the dialogue is going to continue, he added.