Modi-Xi conclude one-on-one with a roadmap to further Indo-China ties

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Mahabalipuram: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday concluded their one-on-one informal talks at the Taj Fisherman’s Cove Resort & Spa beach resort near here.

The talks in a room with a good view of the Bay of Bengal went on for about an hour.

In the morning Modi received Xi at the entrance of the resort. The two leaders shook hands and then boarded a battery-operated vehicle to reach their informal meeting room.

Following which there will be delegation-level talks.

The leaders of the two most populous nations arrived here on Friday for the second Informal India-China Summit. The first one was held in Wuhan, China last year.

Briefing the media about the discussions Modi and Xi had on Friday, Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said the two leaders had detailed discussions on varied issues, including terrorism, increasing radicalisation, enhancing bilateral trade between the two nations and investments, among others.

Gokale said Modi and Xi were also expected to discuss international and regional issues.

Apart from the above, the two leaders and their officials will also discuss the bilateral trade and investments.

On the trade side, the discussions were expected to be centred around the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and also Chinese industries requirements for making investments in India.

The bilateral trade between India and China is about $87 billion. The trade deficit is on India’s side.

Even on Friday, they discussed about enhancing bilateral trade, investments and trade deficit.

The two leaders also agreed to enhance cultural tie-ups and knowledge sharing besides speaking about the ancient trade links that existed between the two countries.

The Second Informal India-China Summit will end with lunch and both the sides will be issuing separate statements.

During Xi’s trip from his hotel in Chennai to Mahabalipuram, people from all walks of life lined the streets waving Chinese and Indian national flags, with young men and women in Indian traditional costumes singing and dancing, to welcome the Chinese President for his visit.

Xi recalled his successful meeting with Modi in Wuhan last year, which brought China-India relations into a new stage, and said that he was delighted to visit the state of Tamil Nadu to further learn about the country.

The two leaders held an extensive talk during the tour of the Mahabalipuram monuments “on dialogue and mutual learning among civilizations”.

Tamil Nadu, a maritime transit hub for cargoes in the ancient Silk Road, has a long history of exchanges with China and close connections with Beijing on maritime trade since ancient times, Xi said.

Both ancient civilizations with several thousand years of history, China and India have carried on their exchanges and mutual learning till this day, Xinhua news agency quoted the Chinese President as saying.

The two countries’ ancestors have overcome various obstacles to carry out extensive exchanges and promote the development of literature, art, philosophy and religion, which have greatly benefited both sides, Xi said.

Noting that China-India cultural and people-to-people exchanges bear great potential, Xi urged both countries to take the 70th anniversary of China-India diplomatic relations next year as an opportunity to conduct broader and deeper cultural and people-to-people exchanges.

He also called on the two countries to jointly advocate and push forward dialogue and exchanges among different civilizations, so as to inject more lasting driving force into the development of bilateral ties and continue to produce new glory for Asian civilizations.

The two leaders agreed that China and India should respect and learn from each other so as to jointly achieve common development and prosperity, as well as the great rejuvenation of the two civilizations, Xinhua added.

In the afternoon Xi will fly out of India.

(Agencies)