Fulfilling a promise made by President Barack Obama in November, the US has removed nine Indian space and defence-related companies from the so-called Entity List to drive hi-tech trade and forge closer strategic ties with India.
The companies removed from the export control list for sensitive items, which triggers export-licence requirements on goods that normally don’t require a licence, include subsidiaries of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
The restrictions have been in place since India tested nuclear weapons in 1998. The move by the commerce department described as the “first steps” to implement the export control policy initiatives announced by Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Nov 8 comes ahead of a visit to New Delhi Feb 6 of Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, who is leading 24 US businesses on a high-tech trade mission to India….
“The perception of onerous US export controls certainly has been a hindrance to high-technology trade over the years,” a US administration official told reporters on a conference call. “So our goal was to remove India from the categories within those dual-use regulations that connote countries as proliferation concerns.” Two major changes, which will go into effect Tuesday, will begin the process of putting export controls for India “on a normalised footing”, the official said.
Read the full story.