U.S. Trade and Development Agency
1000 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 1600 * Arlington, Virginia 22209
Telephone (703) 875-4357 * Fax (703) 875-4009
USTDA Activities in India
The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds various forms of technical assistance, feasibility studies, training, orientation visits and business workshops that support the development of a modern infrastructure and a fair and open trading environment.
USTDA has been active in India since 1983 and has provided more than $22 million in funding for activities supporting development in a diverse range of sectors, including energy, Information and Communications technology, aviation, ports and natural resource development.
In support of the President’s visit to India in March, 2006, USTDA is funding three activities targeting the Indian agriculture sector, which fall under the ongoing U.S.-India Agriculture Knowledge Initiative:
· Agricultural Biotechnology Training Program;
· Biotechnology Patent Examination Training Program; and
· Agriculture Cold Chain System Improvement.
USTDA is also particularly active in the energy and transportation sectors, with ongoing or planned activities in the following areas:
· Developing Coal Bed Methane (CBM) resources, including establishing a national CBM clearinghouse and supporting private sector CBM development projects;
· Improving natural gas transmission systems;
· Enhancing coal mining technology to benefit electricity generation capacity and efficiency;
· Identifying oil refinery upgrade opportunities;
· Organizing “Transportation Solutions for South Asia Trade” Conference, taking place in Mumbai, India, March 7-9, 2006; and
· Developing the U.S.-India Aviation Cooperation Program.
USTDA Agriculture Sector Presidential Deliverable Activities
USTDA approved $500,000 in funding for an Ag-biotech training program for Indian officials. This training program is intended to assist India in: developing a science-based biosafety regulatory and policy environment; facilitating technology transfer in the area of agricultural biotechnology; and eliminating technical barriers to trade for U.S. agricultural commodities. The program has been developed in close collaboration with the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, State, and Commerce, and the U.S. Agency for International Development.
USTDA approved $330,000 to support an agricultural and pharmaceutical biotechnology training program for patent examiners in India's Patent Office, under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. USTDA's training program has strong support from the Indian government, which is eager to train its examiners and expedite the processing of patent applications. This training initiative is intended to enhance capacity among India's patent examiners, while advancing intellectual property protection and facilitating trade in biotechnology. Up to 24 Indian patent examiners and related professionals will participate in a three-week training program including no-cost seminars at USPTO, technical forums at USTDA with scientists and biotechnology patents holders, and site visits with U.S. firms to learn the biotechnology product development process. The program also includes a longer-term two-month training session for two senior examiners.
USTDA approved $500,000 for Technical Assistance to design and implement a targeted cold chain improvement program in selected cities in India. This activity will result in the design and implementation of improvements to existing cold chain infrastructure in India through a series of in-country technical workshops and training seminars, thereby increasing the export value of agricultural commodities from India to international markets and enhancing the competitiveness of U.S. exports of perishable goods to India.