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India strikes river, rice deals with China as relations thaw

09 June, 2018, 21:34 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • Membership to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization will strengthen India’s relations with Central Asia

Following is the text of the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi's departure statement prior to his visit to Qingdao in China.

Following the meeting between Modi and Xi on the margins of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in the coastal city of Qingdao, the two sides signed agreements on China providing hydrological information for the Brahmaputra river and on exporting rice from India.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani walks to his auto after walking out from the airplane upon his arrival at Qingdao Liuting International Airport in Qingdao, China´s Shandong province on June 8, 2018, where he is to take part in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), 18th annual summit.

Ties between the two neighbours had nosedived following last year's military standoff at Doklam and also due to several other issues, including China blocking a move to sanction Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar at the UN Security council and Beijing's opposition to New Delhi's bid to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

Recalling that he and Prime Minister Modi successfully had an informal meeting and reached important consensus in Wuhan, President Xi said the meeting had been well received by both countries and the global community, and a positive atmosphere is taking shape to pay close attention to and support the development of China-India relations. We had detailed discussions on bilateral and global issues.

Modi is expected to hold almost half a dozen bilateral meetings with leaders of other SCO countries.

"Our talks will add further vigour to the India-China friendship", Modi said on Twitter, as the two countries try to reset troubled ties months after a border standoff.




Rouhani is set to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the summit, although the nuclear deal and the issue of its membership are not part of the official agenda. "And in that context Xi told Modi that China is looking at enhancing agricultural exports from India including non-Basmati rice and sugar", Gokhale said.

China's appreciation of what Modi said was conveyed by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj during a meeting held on the sidelines of the BRICS Foreign Ministers Meeting in South Africa this week.

Hours after his arrival in this port city, Modi is scheduled to hold a bilateral meeting with Xi tomorrow during which the two leaders are expected to explore ways to deepen ties in areas of trade and investment besides reviewing the overall bilateral cooperation.

This was the 14th meeting between the two leaders over the past four years. India had said previous year that China did not stick to an agreement to share hydrological data, or scientific information on the movement and quality of water, for the Brahmaputra.

It is for the first time the Indian prime minister will be attending the SCO summit after India along with Pakistan became full-fledged members of the grouping previous year.

The two leaders also discussed China importing "high quality pharmaceutical products" from India.

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