Friday, January 12, 2007

How Lobbying helped Indo-US deal

From Indolink: (h/t: ThinkProgress)
On the one hand, Indian-American lobbyists worked energetically to highlight the commercial potential for the U.S. nuclear industry to participate in the projected build-up of nuclear power in India. They also sponsored numerous trips to India by the American lawmakers and their staff.

And in Washington, the Indian government mounted a multi-faceted lobbying campaign, expending large sums of money -- e.g., $1.3 million on two lobbying firms -- with the aim of pushing the deal through Congress. One of the firms it hired is Barbour, Griffith, and Rogers, which is headed by Robert Blackwill -- a former U.S. ambassador
to India


According to newspaper reports, the U.S.-India Business Council thought that American business could get a considerable portion of the $20-40 billion that India is planning to spend by 2020. It would also open the door for large-scale sale of military hardware to India. For example, Lockheed Martin could get a contract between $4 billion and $9 billion to supply 126 fighter planes India is planning to buy soon. As if on cue, the New York Times said that the Bush administration is organizing a business delegation to India this fall that is "potentially the largest such mission ever to a single country."