Texas Governor Greg Abbott to Lead Trade Delegation to India in 2018

Greg Abbott's visit is another step planned by Texas to increase bilateral ties with India.


Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced a delegation-level visit to India in 2018 during Diwali celebrations held at the Governor’s Mansion in Austin earlier this week. The visit is meant to further strengthen the India-United States relationship.

“I’m very proud to tell you that I’m looking forward to taking a trip to India, where we will continue our ongoing relationship and connection between Texas and India,” Abbott said.

The trade delegation is an initiative planned by Abbott to increase investment and trade between Texas and India in a range of sectors.

Abbott and his wife Cecilia welcomed more than 30 Indian Americans to the governor’s house for the ceremony. The couple lit the ceremonial lamp to start the Diwali celebrations, for the third year in a row.

They commended the Indian American community for their voluntary work and contribution in overcoming the challenges brought in by Hurricane Harvey. At least 700 Indians had volunteered 24,000 hours together and made 28,000 meals for those affected by the devastating hurricane, PTI reported.

Indian Americans from Austin, Houston, Dallas and other places were present at the ceremony, also attended by Anupam Ray, the Consul General of India in Houston.

“It is recognition of the shared values that exist across the entire globe, certainly shared by people here in Texas, as well as the Indian community both here and across the globe,” Abbott, who wore a Nehru jacket on his shirt, said at the event. “The principles that are undermining, for the underlying part of Diwali, that you articulated earlier, and that is how lightness overcomes darkness, how knowledge overcomes ignorance, how hope overcomes fear and so, all of these principles working together or exactly what we celebrate all the time here in Texas.”

Texas Ships Crude Oil to India

In August this year, Texas started sending crude oil to India as part of the first ever such shipment from the United States to the country. Abbott and Navtej Sarna, the Indian Ambassador to the United States, had signed the agreement the same month. The first shipment reached Odisha’s Paradip on Oct.2.

“As a top exporter to India with over $2 billion annually in exports and as the nation’s leader in crude oil reserve and production, Texas looks forward to our growing relationship with India,” Abbott had said in the document he handed to Sarna.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz had also welcomed the new agreement that increased bilateral trade.

The first order was as large as 6 million barrels, which was placed by Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL) and the Bharat Petroleum Corporation Lt. (BPCL) in July. The trade agreement came to fruition after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in June this year.

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