Growing rapport between Chinese, Indian leaders marks new era of ties

2015-05-14 07:39:37 GMT2015-05-14 15:39:37(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

by Xinhua writer Wang Haiqing

BEIJING, May 14 (Xinhua) -- Just like Chinese President Xi Jinping chose not Delhi but the western Indian city of Ahmedabad as the first stop of his official trip to India, Narendra Modi made his China debut as Indian prime minister Thursday in the city of Xi'an.

The two cities, both of which have witnessed friendly exchanges between the two ancient civilizations, are also the hometowns of the two leaders.

Choosing these stops lends not only a personal touch to the relationship between the two leaders, it also reflects their shared desire to push forward relations between the two Asian neighbors.

In a move widely applauded by Chinese bloggers, the Indian prime minister opened an official account on China's microblog Sina Weibo days before his visit. The account attracted over 20,000 followers hours after Modi posted his first tweet.

The unusually warm response towards Modi's effort to communicate with common Chinese citizens is also proof that many Chinese are upbeat about the future development of bilateral ties between China and India following several high-level visits.

During Xi's visit to India last September, the two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in such areas as investment, infrastructure, environmental protection, high-tech, clean energy and sustainable urbanization.

Before Modi's visit, enterprises on both sides have been discussing a series of practical cooperation programs that could result in over 10 billion U.S. dollars worth of contracts.

It is expected that during the visit, China and India will sign big trade deals and reach agreement on various cooperation programs.

One has to bear in mind that a good relationship between the two giant neighbors is significant beyond the bilateral scope, given the size of their populations and the fact that they have long been considered the two major players when it comes to ushering in the so-called "Asian Century."

Cooperation between China and India, also the world's two leading emerging economies, will benefit not only the two peoples, but also the whole of Asia as well as the world.

Admittedly, China-India relations have been burdened by their border disputes for years. But the two sides have largely kept bilateral ties on a track of stable development in recent years despite their differences.

Their boundary negotiations, which concluded the 18th round of talks in March, are in the process of building up small and positive developments, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said.

To ensure a peaceful environment for more than 2.5 billion people combined, the two countries should strive for an early and peaceful solution to their border disputes.

It is hoped that decision-makers in Beijing and Delhi seize the current positive momentum to boost bilateral ties.

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