Till recently US accounted for roughly 20% of total imports as well as exports of India and was the largest importer from and exporter to India. Things have changed. During the first 6 months of the year 2013-14, though US continues to be the largest importer, its share has shrunk to just about 13%’ of the total Indian exports of about $152 billion. In a couple of years, United Arab Emirates may emerge as larger importer than US. As regards exports to India US is only the 5 largest exporter, behind China, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Switzerland, accounting for just 5% of India’s total imports of $231 billion.
US is now the second largest trading (total of imports and exports) partner for India with just 8% of total trade of India. UAE is the largest trading partner and China the 3rd largest .China may come to second place this year or next year.
Of course US is home to about 3 million people of Indian origin, accounting for about 1% of total US population. There was a time when Indians were more eager to be in US than US was eager to take Indians. But things have changed. Indian origin people in S have contributed enormously to the economic, scientific and technological development of US. So it is US that is obliged to India for its brain drain to US.
Considering all aspects, the present relationship between US and India is a relationship of mutual benefit and not a relationship of donor-beneficiary that existed a few decades ago.
So, in the bilateral relationship it is important that US listens to the views of India, considers the regulations of India and respect its sentiments while applying its regulations to Indians individually and collectively . This applies to the US regulations in the case of arrest of Indian diplomat in New York, ignoring the Indian regulations dignity and sentiments of Indians.
India is emerging as a significant economic and technological power and US needs India to remain as a superpower.