China, India share common goal of promoting economic, social development

By Hu Weijia Source:Global Times Published: 2018/6/3 22:03:40

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's keynote speech at the 17th Asia Security Summit, in which he said cooperation between New Delhi and Beijing is expanding and will benefit Asia and the world, has stirred up a lot of discussion in recent days.

The speech added to evidence that the Modi government has been rethinking its China policy after the two countries ended a three-month military standoff in Doklam in August 2017. For some Indian observers, it may seem gutless to extend an olive branch to China amid growing competition among leading powers.

If that is really what Indian people think, US analysts would be happy to hear it.

US President Donald Trump has shown little interest in the "rebalance to Asia" policy espoused by his predecessor. With the reduced presence of Washington in the region, some observers have placed high hopes on India to counter China's influence in Asia. This seems to fit India's path to be at the global center stage.

Some Western countries would love to witness Modi declare a hard-line stance toward China, even if it causes damage to the Indian economy.

As the world's two most populous countries and the fastest-growing major economies, China and India share broad potential for cooperation. India's increasing interaction with China and other fast-growing emerging economies in Asia represents the general trend of the times.

Taking a close look at economic indicators, India experienced a surge in  exports to China last year during the standoff at Doklam.

That doesn't mean economic ties are immune to political conflicts, but we can see that Indian traders have a burning desire to do business with China.

Like China, India's primary strategy is to promote economic and social development. These common interests have become an internal impetus to forge a new type of bilateral relationship, and ties are expected to enter a new phase this year. We hope that the upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit this weekend can become a milestone in the process of Sino-India relations.

However, the two countries have long been troubled by some issues. India has a negative attitude toward China's Belt and Road (B&R) initiative, but this won't stand in the way of bilateral cooperation.

Whether India accepts the concept of the B&R is not a top priority in Sino-Indian relations. What the two countries can focus on is rolling out measures to encourage cooperation on concrete projects. We believe that any contradictions can be solved ultimately as long as cooperation goes forward.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times. bizopinion@globaltimes.com.cn



Posted in: EYE ON ECONOMY

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