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U.S President Bush Meets with Prime Minister Singh of India at G8 Summit

Toyako, Japan
July 9, 2008

PRESIDENT BUSH: Prime Minister Singh and I just had a typical conversation among friends. We talked about common opportunities, world problems, and we did it in a spirit of respect -- and it was easy for me to do because I respect the Prime Minister a lot. I also respect India a lot, and I think it's very important that the United States continues to work with our friends to develop not only a new strategic relationship, but a relationship that addresses some of the world's problems.

We talked about the India-U.S. nuclear deal, and how important that is for our respective countries. We talked about the environment and how we can work together to grow our economies and, at the same time, be responsible stewards of the environment. We talked about free trade, the Doha Round, and how important it is that nations such as India and the United States find common ground to make sure protectionist sentiments don't wall us off from the rest of the world.

We talked about educational exchanges. I reminded the Prime Minister that the Indian American population is very proud of this relationship, and proud of their heritage, and proud of the leadership of the Prime Minister.

All in all, it was a really good meeting amongst two friends. And so, Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for joining us today, and congratulations on your leadership at home.

PRIME MINISTER SINGH: Mr. President, it is a great opportunity for me to once again meet you and to review with you the state of Indo-American relations. And I'm very happy to report to the President that our relations have moved forward handsomely since our first meeting in July 2005. We have made progress in all areas. We have progress in nuclear cooperation, space cooperation, defense cooperation, educational exchanges, our working together in multilateral institutions for the success of the Doha Round. And I am very pleased with the state of our relationship, which has truly acquired the characteristic of a genuine strategic partnership.

I thank the President for his personal magnificent contribution to the evolution of our relationship. And all I can say is our relationship with the United States has never been in such good shape as it is today. And it is the intention of my government, as I believe it is also the will of the Indian people, particularly the thinking segments of our population, that in this increasingly interdependent world that we live in, whether it is a question of climate change, whether it is a question of managing the global economy, India and United States must stand tall, stand shoulder to shoulder, and that's what is going to happen.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Thank you, sir.