PM meets Hu, thinks China won’t be a problem at NSG

July 8th, 2008 - 8:02 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

Sapporo, July 8 (IANS) Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday did not get outright expressions of support from Chinese President Hu Jintao over the India-specific nuclear safeguards agreement. But Indian officials remain hopeful of gaining Beijing’s support. Indian officials believe China may not pose hurdles in getting exemptions from the nuclear cartel to New Delhi conducting nuclear business with the world once the IAEA finalises the safeguards agreement.

Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon, while briefing reporters, repeated the prime minister’s words to Indian newspersons earlier that he did not anticipate “a difficulty” from the Chinese on this issue.

The Chinese have expressed willingness to cooperate with India in the development of civil nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, he said.

At his meeting with Manmohan Singh, Hu strongly condemned the terror attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul Monday that killed over 40 people including four Indians, two of them diplomats.

The two leaders also reiterated their commitment to maintain “peace and tranquility” on their long frontier pending a final resolution of the border row that is already being thrashed out at senior officials’ level.

But the cheering aspect of the relationship was surely the whopping 74 percent increase in bilateral trade, which stood at $24 billion, in just seven months of the year in comparison to the same period last year.

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