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President Hu Jintao Meets with Indian Prime Minister Singh

On March 29, 2012, Chinese President Hu Jintao met with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi. Both sides exchanged views on China-India relations as well as major international and regional issues of common concern and reached new important consensus. The leaders of the two countries announced the year 2012 as the "Year of India-China Friendship and Cooperation", pledging to take this opportunity to push the Sino-Indian strategic cooperative partnership to a new level.

Hu first congratulated India on successfully holding the fourth BRICS summit. Singh thanked for China's active support and participation in the meeting.

Hu made ​​positive comments on the comprehensive and rapid development of bilateral ties in recent years. As the two largest developing nations and two major Asian powers, China and India face important development opportunities and China-India relations have great potential for further development, said Hu. It is China's unswerving policy to adhere to the Sino-Indian friendship, deepen strategic cooperation and promote common development. Eternal friendship and sincere friends are China's expectation for relations with India. China is willing to see a peaceful, developed and prosperous India, and is committed to building a more rigorous China-India relationship, he added. China is ready to work with the Indian side to seize opportunities, accelerate development, jointly cope with challenges and share the fruits of development to benefit the two peoples and make greater contributions to peace, stability and prosperity of Asia and the world at large.

The Chinese president put forward a five-point proposal on promoting China-India relations. First, the two countries should maintain high-level contacts and increase political mutual trust, said Hu. The two countries should also expand exchanges between their governments, legislatures, political parties and the military, strengthen strategic communication through various consultation mechanisms and carry out dialogues on new topics such as maritime cooperation, he said. Second, the two sides should deepen practical cooperation and expand mutual benefits, said the Chinese president. The two countries should enhance economic policy coordination and cooperate in the fields of infrastructure, information technology, mutual investment and environmental protection. Third, China and India should expand cultural and people-to-people exchanges so as to promote mutual understanding, he said. Both sides should continue to organize the exchange visits of 100-member youth delegations, well implement Chinese language teaching in India and other major projects, strengthen cooperation in tourism, promote personnel exchanges and encourage expanded local and media exchanges and cooperation. Fourth, the two countries should properly handle their differences and work for peace and stability, said Hu. He urged both sides to push forward border talks in the spirit of peace, friendship, equal consultation, mutual respect and mutual understanding and make good use of the working mechanism of consultation and coordination on border affairs so as to jointly safeguard peace and security on the borders. Finally, Hu said the two countries should strengthen communication and coordination to expand cooperation in international affairs. China and India should enhance coordination and cooperation within the frameworks of the United Nations, the Group of 20 and BRICS, among others, and work together to address major global challenges such as climate change, energy and food security. He added that the two sides should enhance dialogue and coordination on regional issues to safeguard peace and stability and promote common development in the region.

Singh said India-China relations are one of the most important bilateral relationships in the 21st century. The two countries can learn from each other and work together for development as both countries are seeking fast development. He said India is ready to maintain high-level contacts with China so as to deepen mutual trust and expand mutually beneficial cooperation. Both sides should also work together to ensure the success of bilateral strategic economic dialogue. India is ready to promote bilateral trade and mutual investment so that bilateral trade could reach 100 billion U.S. dollars by 2015, said Singh. He said India will adopt concrete measures to encourage Chinese investment to help promote India's infrastructure development. India encourages contacts between the political parties and media of the two countries as well as cultural exchanges to enhance mutual understanding and friendship. India is ready to strengthen coordination and cooperation with China in regional and international affairs and work together to promote world peace, stability and development.

India has no intention to contain China and will not take part in any schemes aimed at containing China, said Singh. India recognizes the Tibet Autonomous Region as part of China and will not allow Tibetans to pursue anti-China activities in India, he said. He also expressed the hope to work with China to maintain peace and security on the borders and properly resolve border issues through friendly talks.

After the meeting, Hu and Singh lit the oil lamp, a symbol of purity and good luck, according to Indian tradition during a launching ceremony of "Year of China-India Friendship and Cooperation" to express best wishes for friendship between both peoples.

Ling Jihua, Wang Huning and Dai Bingguo attended the above activities.

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