During their meeting on the sidelines of the VIth BRICS Summit at Fortaleza in Brazil, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed the unresolved border dispute between the two countries, and also highlighted the need to address the trade deficit.
Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said that Modi had called for a resolution of the boundary issue and maintenance of peace and tranquillity along the border.
"Any India and China discussion also takes into account the unresolved issue of the boundary question, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi mentioned that there was a need to address this. He said there was a need to find a solution to the boundary question and maintenance of peace and tranquility at the border was essential while both India and
China work towards resolving this issue, that is the boundary question," said Akbaruddin.
India and China have a complex relationship marked by a border dispute that stretches decades back and the nations have fought wars regarding the same in 1962.
Meanwhile, Modi has also invited Xi Jinping to India and the Chinese President might visit in September. Xi Jinping has invited Modi for a bilateral meeting and Modi is likely to visit China in November.
Addressing the mediapersons, Akbaruddin also said that Modi had suggested addition of one more route for the Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra, keeping in view the terrain difficulties.
"He said that India and China should work together in terms of addressing terrorism and extremism in the region. In this context he also referred to our common civilization heritage and the possibilities of that common civilization heritage helping us in addressing this menace of terrorism," Akbaruddin added.
Akbaruddin said Chinese President Xi acknowledged the possibilities of expansion of trade between the two nations.
"Prime Minister emphasized on economic linkages between the two countries. He spoke about infrastructure cooperation, references were made to industrial parks and the need to address trade deficit. On his part, President Xi did acknowledge that for trade ties to be sustainable there needs to be a much more balanced approach towards trade. He acknowledged that there were possibilities of enhance trade and services from India, possibilities of expansion of Indian exports and tourism," Akbaruddin said.
Recently, China's growing diplomatic and military clout has rattled nerves around the region, especially with Beijing's increasingly strident moves to assert itself in territorial disputes in the East China Sea with Japan and in the South China Sea with countries such as Vietnam and the Philippines.
Since assuming power on May 26, Modi has moved quickly to assert India with neighbouring countries. He invited regional leaders including the prime minister of traditional rival Pakistan to his inauguration.
But despite the bonhomie, many of Modi's allies have a hawkish view of China, arguing that overtures by India's largest neighbour should not be taken a face value.
The sixth summit of the BRICS, which consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, will be held in Brazil till July 16.