NEW DELHI — China and India pledged in New Delhi on Dec 21 to further boost the people-to-people exchanges to consolidate public opinion foundation for the development of bilateral relations.
While meeting with visiting State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, India President Ram Nath Kovind said developing bilateral ties with China is the priority of India’s foreign policies.
Since the informal meeting between the leaders of the two countries in Wuhan, China early this year, the development of bilateral ties has achieved positive progress. The people-to-people exchanges between the two countries is an important part of the India-China relations, which also serves as an important driving force for the development of bilateral ties, the Indian president said.
India and China, both with great ancient civilizations, are important neighbors. India is willing to maintain the high-level exchanges and deepen the people-to-people exchanges between the two countries, the president said.
India is also ready to expand economic and trade cooperation, strengthen military ties and promote political mutual trust with China, safeguard the peace and stability in the border areas and conduct closer communication and coordination with China regarding international affairs, the president said.
For his part, Wang said China and India, two great ancient civilizations, have great potentials in terms of people-to-people exchanges.
Both nations are in the course of developing their economy, improving people’s livelihood and realizing national rejuvenation, Wang noted, adding that the 2.7 billion combined population of China and India marching towards modernization will have profound and far-reaching influence on the future of mankind.
The healthy and stable development of China-India ties not only conforms to the interests of the two nations and the two peoples, but also helps promote world peace and development, said Wang.
Under the strategic guidance of leaders of both countries, the China-India ties are showing all-round improvement with frequent high-level exchanges, accelerated communications in all sectors and expedited pragmatic cooperation, he said.
The China-India high-level people-to-people exchanges mechanism follows the tradition of exchanges between the two great civilizations, meets the wish of the two peoples to strengthen communications and mutual understanding, and complies with the need for comprehensive development of bilateral ties, he said.
China is willing to work with India to promote people-to-people exchanges between the two sides so as to consolidate the public opinion foundation of bilateral ties, said Wang.
Amid the current international situation, China and India should also closely coordinate with each other in international affairs, jointly safeguard the legitimate interests of the two countries and other developing countries, and act as the contributors of global governance and stabilizers of the international order, he said.
Wang is on a visit to India to co-chair the first meeting of China-India high-level people-to-people exchanges mechanism with Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.