India, China should improve border management, says president
Beijing, May 27 (IANS) President Pranab Mukherjee has said that he had conveyed to the Chinese leadership that the two countries should improve border management and ensure peace and tranquility in border areas as they seek an early resolution to the boundary question.
In his media statement at the conclusion of his four-day state visit to China, Mukherjee said there was convergence of views that the two major powers must have “greater strategic communication”.
“The Chinese leadership has conveyed its resolve to seek a fair, reasonable and mutually acceptable resolution of the boundary question at an early date. I agreed with the Chinese leadership that while we continue to engage in seeking an early resolution of the boundary question, we must improve border management and ensure peace and tranquility is maintained in border areas,” Mukherjee said.
The president, who visited China from May 24 to 27, said there was convergence that India and China should work together in an uncertain global situation where economic recovery was fragile, geo-political risks were growing and menace of terrorism proving to be a threat to the whole world.
“We agreed that as neighbours it is natural for us to have differences from time to time. But, what is important is that both countries continue to advance our relationship while managing differences,” he said.
Mukherjee said he was briefed on the steps taken by China to bring balance in bilateral trade including facilitating greater import of agricultural and pharmaceutical products from India.
“I conveyed that while addressing the imbalance is important, we should continue to expand bilateral trade,” he said.
The president said India and China were today the “engines driving global economic growth” and business sectors should take advantage of the abundant opportunities available in the two countries.
Referring to terrorism, Mukherjee said he conveyed to the Chinese leaders that there was universal concern over growing acts of terror and there was no good or bad terrorist.
“India has been a victim of terrorism for around three-and-a-half decades. Comprehensive cooperation by all countries of the world is essential to tackle this global menace. The international community must engage in strong and effective action. As close neighbours, India and China should work together.”
The president said the Chinese leadership agreed that terrorism was a menace to the entire human race. “They conveyed their willingness to enhance cooperation, including in the United Nations,” he added.
China had last month blocked India’s efforts to get Jaish-e-Mohamed chief and Pathankot attack mastermind Masood Azhar designated a terrorist in the UN. India had voiced its deep disappointment at blocking of the move to ban Azhar and raised the issue with the Chinese leadership.
Mukherjee said he told the Chinese leadership that India faces acute energy shortage and was engaged in efforts to significantly expand power generation. “We have announced a goal of 40 percent non-fossil fuel power generation capacity in our Intended Nationally Determined Contributions and this target can be achieved only if we rapidly expand the generation of nuclear power.”
The president also stressed the need to pro-actively promote contacts in tourism, between academic institutions, among students and the youth as well as through sub-regional twinning arrangements.
Terming his visit as well as discussions with Chinese leaders as “fruitful and productive,” Mukherjee said that the BRICS Summit in Goa in October and the G-20 Summit in Hangzhou in September will provide opportunities to continue the bilateral dialogue.
“My interaction with the Chinese leadership was multi-faceted and comprehensive. It was conducted in a warm, friendly and cordial as well as candid manner,” he said.
Mukherjee also invited President Xi Jinping to visit India.