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US not to change India aid policy

US not to change India aid policy

Washington: Against the backdrop of the UK announcing its decision to halt all aid to India in 2015, the US has said it has no plans to follow Britain's lead, though its assistance to New Delhi has dropped by over 25 per cent since 2010.

From a total assistance of USD 126.7 million in 2010, the proposed US aid to India for the year 2013 has dropped to USD 98.3 million, as this country goes through a grave economic crisis. It stood at USD 121.6 million in 2011 and USD 108 million in 2012.

State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told reporters that there is no plan for the US to change its policy of assistance to India.

"I don't see - I don't have any change in our India assistance to announce... but obviously in every budget cycle, we look at all the priorities across the planet, and we have to make tough decisions in consultations with those governments in terms of what's effective," Nuland said.

Her remarks came in response to a question on the British decision to end its aid to India in 2015 and make further cuts in its annual 280 million-pound assistance to the country for the remaining three years.

The Obama Administration has, however, adopted a new model of assistance to focus on poverty alleviation and addressing security challenges like terrorism.

In its last budgetary proposals to the Congress early this year, the State Department had said that the US has begun
a transition to a new strategic assistance relationship with India, from one of donor-recipient to a true partnership, where both sides have something to offer.

"The United States is increasingly looking to India as a source of development innovations that can provide effective and sustainable solutions that address not only the needs of India's poor but also have the potential to improve the lives of those living in poverty globally," it had said.


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