At the recently concluded US India Business Council's 36th anniversary in Washington DC, Ambassador Meera Shankar stepped up the volume on India's 12th five-year plan that seeks to spend $ 1 trillion on infrastructure with 50 per cent from non-government sources. This seems to be a perfect opportunity for the US to ramp up its $ 49 billion trade with India and take it to a new orbit. Current trade is just over a tenth of the US's $ 456 billion bilateral trade with China, its second-largest trade partner after Canada. When I sought some answers from Harold 'Terry' McGraw, Chairman, USIBC, and Francisco Sanchez, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, on why the US has stayed in the wings by choosing to be an 'equipment supplier' rather than coming up front as a developer on PPP programmes, they seemed to convey their interest in the opportunities as trade interests were being addressed by the respective governments. Following this summit, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner made headway at the second meeting of the US-India Economic and Financial Partnership. A joint statement issued at the end of the talks announced that India and the US had agreed to work together to expand trade and investment links between the two economies, and to develop and strengthen their financial systems. Leveraging their combined knowledge, experience, and shared interests, the two agreed to a "robust agenda" for the coming year that includes deeper engagement in macroeconomic challenges, financial sector reforms, and infrastructure finance. The US, according to the statement, is "committed to making the investments in technology, skills, and infrastructure necessary to maintain and enhance US competitiveness in the global economy". And for its part, "India intends to take steps to marshal private and public saving to meet the infrastructure needs of a rapidly growing Indian economy". Indeed, all doors seem to lead to the development of Indian infrastructure - the biggest global opportunity!In keeping with this spirit, ASAPP Media Information Group will organise an international conference, INFRASTRUCTURE TODAY INDIA OPPORTUNITY, on September 16 in New York. Ministers from India and senators from the US will mingle and deliberate on this platform. While the appetite for the Indian deal is certainly on the rise, obstacles like land acquisition are queering the pitch. Fortunately, the Supreme Court has also made observations recently on this matter and we hope Parliament deals with it in its forthcoming session. Indian businesses have the potential to form good partnerships with developers from advanced nations where they share the risks and gains of development. It's time for Indian contractors and developers to enhance the bouquet of projects that can be described as 'world-class'. Delhi's T3 Airport and the Delhi Metro Rail are good showpieces but we need many more like them to prove our commitment to quality in infrastructure.Just as Dubai bet all its reserves on building a port in the 1960s and dredged a miserable draft to transform it into a world-class facility, India needs to use its scarce resources effectively and efficiently in investing in projects like the dedicated freight corridor, river linking projects, ports, airports, roads and railways as they will enhance economic activities for decades to come.