India, China prospered as border was tranquil: PM

Beijing, Oct 24 (IANS) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Thursday said the relationship between India and China has prospered because both the countries have managed their differences and "kept the border regions tranquil".

"...our relationship has prospered and our cooperation has expanded across a broad spectrum of areas. This is because we have managed our differences and have, in general, kept our border regions tranquil. At the same time, we continue to make progress on resolving our border dispute," Manmohan Singh said during his visit at the Central Party School of the powerful Chinese Communist Party.

Manmohan Singh who is visiting China in the second leg of his two-nation tour that also took him to Russia flies back home Thursday.

He said the stability in the relationship with China has created a basic condition for both the nations to exploit the opportunities created by their economic growth and openings.

The Indian prime minister, who got a standing ovation, said China has emerged as India's largest economic partner.

He said India plans to invest $1 trillion in "infrastructure in the next five years and we would welcome China's expertise and investment in this sector".

"Naturally, there are also concerns on both sides - whether these are incidences on the border regions, trans-border rivers or trade imbalances," he said.

He said: "Our recent experiences have shown these issues can become hindrances to the full exploitation of opportunities of bilateral and multi-lateral cooperation."

The prime minister said he was pleased with the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement (BDCA) that was signed Wednesday and said officials who determine public policy "will do everything to advance our cooperation and promote India-China relations".

He said President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang had given him confidence of achieving the vision of India and China becoming prosperous nations and mutually compatible.

"Our future should be decided on cooperation and not confrontation. It will not be easy, but we must spare no effort. What is at stake is the future of India and China," Manmohan Singh said.

The prime minister said that relations between India and China are "unique in the world".

"Today, we are the world's two most populous nations, engaged in a process of socio-economic transformation of our people on a scale and at a pace unprecedented in human history."

He said the effort now is to return the Indian economy to a sustained growth rate of 7-8 percent per annum.

"India's critical challenges in the days ahead are precisely in areas where I see opportunities for cooperation between India and China..."

"We need to pay much greater attention to the expansion and modernization of our infrastructure. India plans to invest $1 trillion in infrastructure in the next five years and we would welcome China's expertise and investment in this sector."

He went on to say that China has significant experience of urbanization and "our national planners, city administrators and entrepreneurs should share experiences and seek solutions in dealing with the physical, social, environmental and human challenges of mobility and urbanization".

"...we want to draw upon China's strength in the manufacturing sector, which is vital for providing mass employment. India, for its part, has strength in services, innovation and certain manufacturing sectors, which can benefit China."

He also noted that in an uncertain global environment, "India and China can work together to impart stability to the global economy and sustain growth in our two economies by leveraging our resources, large unsaturated demand, economies of scale and our growing income levels".

The prime minister said maintaining peace and tranquility in the India-China border areas has been the cornerstone of our relationship.

"It is essential for mutual confidence and for the expansion of our relations. We should do nothing to disturb that. Indeed, we can achieve it by adhering to our agreements and utilizing our bilateral mechanisms effectively. At the same time, we should move quickly to resolve our boundary issue."

"...we should increase consultations and cooperation on complex issues such as trans-border rivers and our trade imbalance so as to strengthen our strategic and cooperative partnership," he added.


Get stories like this on the Yahoo app and discover more every day.
Download it now.