Manmohan eyes more trade,
investment with China
January 13: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh pushed China on
Monday to address their bilateral trade imbalance, as the
world's two fastest-growing economies seek to put aside a
lingering border dispute and deepen economic ties.
said both sides wanted to work towards creating an environment
for greater economic interaction, calling for a "roadmap"
for trade that would factor in "complementarities and
has to include creating a level playing field by addressing
such issues as non-tariff barriers, IPR (intellectual property
rights) protection and market-related exchange rates,"
Singh told business officials.
countries had to compete in a global market, he said, adding
that "such competition is not inconsistent with cooperation,
nor is it adversarial".
meets his Chinese counterpart, Wen Jiabao, later on Monday
for formal talks, following a private dinner between the two
on Sunday night.
trade in 2007 rose 56 per cent from a year earlier to $38.6
billion, according to China's Commerce Ministry.
Trade Minister Kamal Nath, accompanying the prime minister,
drove home his country's unhappiness that the trade balance
was increasingly skewed in China's favour.
who held talks with Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming,
said he had called on Beijing to lower barriers on imports
of fruits and vegetables from India. He had also voiced the
hope that China would approve a proposal from India's Jet
Airways Ltd to fly from Mumbai to San Francisco via Shanghai.
also raised the issue of China's taking years to register
pharmaceuticals as a typical non-tariff barrier hindering
for its part, complains of barriers to direct investment on
the Indian side but, in a statement on the Commerce Ministry's
Web site, encouraged Chinese companies to increase imports
from India and said that over time their two-way trade would
become more balanced.
began his visit on Sunday on a friendly note with visits to
sites for the 2008 Olympics, which Beijing will host in August,
including the Olympic Project Exhibition Centre, which displays
models of the main venues.
trade, China and India also face common challenges on issues
such as climate change and energy security.
the neighbours must also break down historic wariness over
China's traditional friendship with Indian archrival Pakistan,
and a decades-long border dispute that flared into war in
say Singh's visit is unlikely to bring any breakthrough on
the border dispute, which centres on China's claims to much
of India's north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh. Beijing
says the land is rightly part of Tibet.
Tibet issue is at the core of the India-China divide, and
without Beijing beginning a process of reconciliation in Tibet,
there is little prospect of Sino-Indian differences being
bridged," said Khedroob Thondup, a member of the India-based
values its claims on additional Indian territories as vital
leverage to keep India under pressure."