Bengaluru: U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Biswal announced two new United States Agency for International Development (USAID) partnerships to increase clean energy access to India.
In her first trip to India as U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, Nisha Biswal met with government and business leaders to discuss our joint efforts to foster innovation, increase our high-tech and engineering engagement, and strengthen U.S.-India economic ties.
USAID awarded a $200,000 grant to the SELCO Foundation to help establish six “innovation labs” that will develop and test sustainable energy solutions. USAID is also supporting a $2.5 million loan guarantee to Orb Energy, a clean energy service provider. As a result of the loan, Orb will provide energy to 500 branches of primarily underserved communities by 2016 in the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh.
Assistant Secretary Biswal also met with business leaders from the American Chamber of Commerce. She discussed opportunities for U.S.-India partnerships in the state of Karnataka with Governor Bharadwaj at his residence. She visited General Electric and toured its John F. Welch Technology Center, an example of high-tech U.S. investment in Karnataka. Assistant Secretary Biswal concluded her day in Bengaluru with a visit to the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). She discussed U.S.-India space cooperation with ISRO Chairman Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, and she learned about India’s “Mars Orbiter Mission” (MOM).
For full details on Assistant Secretary Biswal’s visit to India please visit http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2014/02/222717.htm. You can follow her trip on Twitter: @NishaBiswal