By 2030, India May Lead The World: Former US Ambassador to India

In a lecture to students at Jindal University, Richard Verma shared his vision for India to be a world leader.

South Asians
2 min read
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In a virtual commencement address to the Jindal University's School of Banking and Finance, former US Ambassador to India Richard Verma spoke about India's future with the "youngest workforce in Asia" and US-India ties, which according to him is the "most consequential relationship of the century".

"We can do so much together," he said, referring to the US-India ties.

Richard Verma was the first ever Indian American envoy sent by the American administration to India. He was the US Ambassador to India from 2014 to 2017. He also served in the Obama administration as the Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs. Verma is a lawyer, and after leaving the government he served as the Vice Chair of the Washington based advisory firm The Asia Group. Currently, he is the Executive Vice President of Global Public Policy and Regulatory Affairs at MasterCard.


Young Population and Infrastructure Development

In his speech on 2 August, Verma told the students of Jindal University, "You have the world at your fingertips. Your country will have a leading seat in international institutions, your businesses will continue to power economic growth and innovations globally, and all of you can choose what role you want to play today and in the future."

He shared how he envisions India in 2030, a leader, with the youngest workforce in Asia. India has about "600 million people under the age of 25," the US top diplomat noted.

"The most populous nation, the most college graduates, the largest middle-class, the most cell phone and Internet users, along with the third largest military and third largest economy, all coexisting in the world’s largest democracy," he said, stressing on how all these factors along with the massive developments will make India a world leader.


He spoke about India's expenditure for the infrastructure developments, the building of new airports. "Some $2 trillion will be spent on infrastructure in just the next decade. The bulk of the infrastructure needed for 2030 is yet to be built. That’s why some 100 new airports are under planning or construction today alone,” he noted.

"It is why I am so excited for you," he said.


US-India Ties Are Young, Time to Deliver

In the address, he also touched upon the significance of the relationship between the two nations. He noted that the relationship started with Clinton's visit to India in the year 2000, is still very young.

"It was a breakthrough visit after decades of being somewhat distant, and even at times, estranged,” he said, "We can no longer look decades in the future. The time to deliver the results for our people is now – it's today."

"That’s a big challenge, but it’s also exciting, for us here in America, and for all of you in India, especially as you start out on your studies and then careers," Verma told the students.

Whether it’s battling a pandemic, countering terrorism and proliferation, or bringing to market all those new innovations and solutions that will make people’s lives easier, safer, greener, more prosperous, more inclusive and more secure.
Richard Verma

"We are not there yet, but we can get there," he said as he reiterated that the two nations can do "so much together".

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