Boundary, trade issues will be discussed with Chinese leadership: Manmohan Singh

January 12th, 2008 - 10:35 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

By Ashok Dixit

New Delhi, Jan 11 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Saturday said that he would use his three-day visit to China to give substantive content to the nearly three-year-old Strategic Cooperation Partnership inked by Prime Minister Wen Jiabao and himself.

In a departure statement ahead of his visit, Dr. Singh said: Our bilateral relations are now poised to enter a vibrant and dynamic phase, based on a common recognition that the growth and development of both India and China will make positive and long term contributions to regional and global peace, security and stability. We share a desire to enhance our relationship both bilaterally and at the global level.
I look forward to my discussions with the Chinese leadership on the entire gamut of our relationship. We are engaged in the process of giving substantive content to our partnership through comprehensive economic engagement and developing mutually beneficial cooperation in the areas of science and technology, culture, education, defence and security, and increasing people-to-people contacts, he said.

Issues relating to the boundary and cooperation with regard to Trans-boundary Rivers will be discussed. I will be discussing how we can work more closely with China on regional, multilateral and global issues. he added.

The Prime Minister said that during his stay in Beijing, he would call on Chinese President Hu Jintao, and Wu Bangguo, Chairman of the National Peoples Congress.

Giving high priority to strengthening of Sino-India relations, Dr Singh said: China is our largest neighbour and also a focal point of our Look East policy.

He said he would be holding bilateral discussions with Premier Wen Jiabao on matters of mutual interest.

He further said that a strategic and cooperative partnership for peace and prosperity was established when Premier Jiabao visited India in April 2005, adding that during President Hu Jintaos visit in November 2006 we laid down a ten-pronged strategy to qualitatively upgrade our bilateral ties.

Chinese and Indian leadership are expected to call for formal negotiations on a regional trading arrangement during Dr. Singh’s three-day official visit to Beijing starting from Sunday morning.

This next step forward, according to official sources, will be based on the recommendation made by a joint task force that was appointed by both countries to study the feasibility and benefits accruing from such a regional arrangement.

During the visit, India and China will sign five Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) and institutional mechanisms for cooperation in railways, housing, geo-sciences, land resource management and traditional medicine.

The Prime Minister will be accompanied by a 25-plus-member business delegation, comprising big guns of India Incorporated from a range of sectors, including manufacturing and IT.

He will be the first Congress Prime Minister to visit China since September 1993 (P.V. Narasimha Rao was the last one). Atal Behari Vajpayee undertook the last visit by an Indian Prime Minister to China in June 2003. Dr. Singh will be the fifth Indian Prime Minister to undertake a visit to China since 1954. (ANI)

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