Published: Sun, June 10, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

PM's statement prior to his departure to Qingdao in China

PM's statement prior to his departure to Qingdao in China

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said one of the important outcomes of today's meeting was that the Chinese side accepted Prime Minister's invitation to President Xi to come to India for an informal summit next year, similar to the one held by the two leaders in Wuhan on April 27-28. Later this year, the Chinese Defence Minister will visit India, while National Security Advisor Ajit Doval will travel to China for the Special Representative-level border talks.

Xi noted it was India and Pakistan's first meeting since joining in 2017 and said this year they would "draw up a blueprint for (the SCO's) future growth".

It is for the first time the Indian Prime Minister will be attending the SCO summit after India along with Pakistan became a full-fledged members of the grouping, jointly dominated by China and Russian Federation, which has been increasingly seen as a counter to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

The prime minister also met Shavkat Mirziyoyev, the president of Uzbekistan and discussed ways of deepening ties between the two countries.

Last year, China had stopped sharing data soon after the 73-day long stand-off between Indian and Chinese troops at Dokalam over Chinese military's plans to build a road close to India's Chicken Neck corridor connecting North-Eastern states.

The declaration will hold details of the significant mechanism for resisting the global terror activities.

President Xi said that China attached importance to its relations with Pakistan which would continue to remain a priority for China.

Modi is also said that have acknowledged the Wuhan summit as a "milestone in relationship", one which would help develop mutual understanding and trust and take the relationship forward. Indian pharmaceuticals are another potential item of export to China, he said. Zhou also said he believed India and China had shared concerns on combating terrorism, as well as on promoting free trade and multilateralism, especially as China's relations with Donald Trump's administration faces growing tensions. India will also be allowing Bank of China to open a branch in Mumbai, Gokhale said.

Apart from this, the two sides formally agreed to undertake a joint project in Afghanistan, pertaining to "capacity building".

However, there is no official word on whether there will be any interaction between Modi and Pakistan President Hussain, who is scheduled to attend the meeting in China.

The two leaders also spoke about ensuring greater people-to-people contact, with Xi talking about the popularity of Indian films like Dangal, Bahubaali and Hindi Medium in China. Over the past years, SCO member states have jointly made achievements in deterring terrorist attacks and arresting members of worldwide terrorist organisations, he said.

Beijing agreed to share hydrological information of the Brahmaputra river with New Delhi and agreed to let India export non-basmati rice.

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