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India-China Set Tone for Future Relations; Sign 12 Agreements
Sep 19, 2014

As many as 12 accord documents were exchanged between India and China following the talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping in New Delhi. The first agreement was on a new pilgrimage route to Kailash Mansarovar, while two accords were on trade development. One agreement was on audio-video co-production, and another was on cooperation in railways. An agreement was on drug administration, while yet another was on exchanges between cultural institutions. One MoU was also on the peaceful uses of outer space and another was on mutual administration and cooperation on customs matters. A sister city agreement was concluded between Shanghai and Mumbai. China will invest $20 billion in five years in India. 

China will open an additional route to Kailash Mansarovar via Nathu La. This new route will be in addition to the existing route via Uttarakhand. This decision will help more and more Indians reach Kailash Mansarovar, in particular the old, as transportation on motorcycles would be available on the new route. This road will remain safe during the rainy season, too.

Chinese President Xi Jinping assured of greater access to Indian goods and investments in a bid to bridge the yawning trade deficit between the two countries. India urged China to give Indian companies better market access and investment opportunities in China. The Chinese president assured that he will take concrete steps in this regard. India-China bilateral merchandise trade stood at $65.88 billion in 2013. While India’s exports to China was valued at $14.50 billion, its imports were much larger at $51.37 billion, resulting in a large trade deficit.

India also expressed its concern on the situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). India stressed the  need to have a clarification on LAC to maintain peaceful relations between the two countries and solve the border dispute at the earliest. In response, Chinese Premier  said that China will work to settle the border issue at the earliest. Since the border is not demarcated there will be some incidents, but both countries are capable of settling it at various levels without causing a bigger impact. 

Indian Prime Minister expressed concern over China's visa policy and trans border rivers issue. He hoped that an early resolution on these matters would enhance mutual trust. 

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