Modi calls for India, China to work towards ‘Asian Century’


India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday told China he had “a personal bond” with the country and wanted India and China to work more closely together – a sentiment that was reciprocated by President Xi Jinping, who said he had “full confidence” in the relationship as he received India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in Beijing.

Swaraj launched a “Visit India” year in China at a function where Modi addressed the Chinese audience through a video message. Modi said he wanted Chinese to visit India in large numbers. He said he felt “a personal bond” when he travelled to China – he visited as many as four times as Gujarat chief minister.

Modi he said he believed the next century would be “an Asian Century” and he called on India and China to work together to that objective.

Swaraj said that with two strong leaders an “out of the box” solution to the border dispute could be explored, although such a possibility remains difficult with both governments facing a challenge of selling the reality of mutual concessions to their respective publics.

Xi told Swaraj that he believed that following his September visit “the positive side of the China-India relationship has been growing and the momentum of our cooperation has been strengthening”, he said.

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