Image copyright Reuters Image caption President-elect Trump has expressed his affection for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Indian-American businessman Donald Trump has told Indian business leaders that he and his wife will open a “very big” Indian embassy in the US.
Mr Trump said the US president-elect and his wife Melania would open the diplomatic branch of their company in the Indian capital New Delhi.
The New York Times says it has obtained transcripts of phone calls Mr Trump made to Indian business leaders following the US election.
India is an important American and Indian trading partner, but ties are strained.
Ms Trump was named US ambassador to the United Nations (UN) by President Obama on 3 May, replacing Anne Patterson.
Image copyright PA Image caption Indian-American businessman Vijay Mallya lost his US visa in 2013 over a $10m (£5.4m) defaulted loan
However, she will have to wait until after Mr Trump becomes US president to take the diplomatic role and it has been reported that she is now planning a trip to India in early February.
Mr Trump said he was setting up a “very big” embassy, adding that it would provide “great work for our country”.
“My wife Melania and I are going to go to India. So we are opening up our major company as one of the largest developers,” Mr Trump said at a private fundraiser in New York on Monday night.
The billionaire businessman said he expected the new embassy to be built by 2024 and that its staff “will be much bigger”.
Mr Trump has praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Indian-born leader, for his leadership.
But he has also expressed admiration for Mr Modi for leading “the Hindu community”.
Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Donald Trump: Let me bring jobs back to our country
Ms Trump met Indian-Americans at a recent meeting at Trump Tower, the building she and her husband, businessman Jared Kushner, live in.
“Mrs Trump likes India, her kids like India, and as he says: ‘We are really getting into something really big’,” said one woman present at the meeting.
But the same woman has described her boss’ views on the country as “very limited”.
She was also quoted as saying that Mr Trump thought Indian-Americans were “snowflakes” compared to other Americans.
‘Not interested’ in business ties
Mr Trump, the Republican
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