India and U.S. Sign MoU on "Innovation Handshake"

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) titled "Enhancing Innovation Ecosystems through an Innovation Handshake" was signed between India and the U.S. under the India-U.S. Commercial Dialogue framework on November 14, 2023, in San Francisco.

Key Points

  • Innovation Handshake Announcement in June: The "Innovation Handshake" was announced during the official State Visit of the Indian Prime Minister in June 2023, and the recent MoU is a concrete step towards its implementation.
  • Industry Roundtable Kick-off in San Francisco: The MoU was signed at the industry roundtable event, "Decoding the 'Innovation Handshake': U.S. – India Entrepreneurship Partnership," co-hosted by USIBC and CII, where CEOs, venture capitalists, and startup founders discussed enhancing U.S.-India technology collaboration.
  • Objectives of the MoU: The MoU aims to connect startup ecosystems, address regulatory hurdles, share best practices for fundraising, and promote innovation and job growth, especially in Critical and Emerging Technologies (CET) identified under the India-U.S. initiative for CET.
  • Positive Impact on Economic Activity: The agreement signals a joint commitment to strengthen deep tech startup ecosystems, promoting economic activity, attracting investment, and generating employment, particularly in CET areas.
  • Future Innovation Handshake Events: Two events are planned for early 2024, including an investment forum and a "hackathon" in Silicon Valley, fostering collaboration between U.S. and Indian startups to address global economic challenges.
  • Commercial Dialogue Background: The Commercial Dialogue is a Ministerial-level cooperative effort between India and the U.S., facilitating regular discussions to deepen ties between business communities and enhance trade and investment opportunities.
  • TIIG's Role in Supporting Startups: The TIIG Working Group aims to support startup efforts aligned with the iCET goals, identifying regulatory hurdles, and fostering connectivity between innovation ecosystems, focusing on startups through joint activities.