Backgrounder: Major events in development of China-India ties

21:40, December 15, 2010      

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Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao started an official visit to India on Wednesday to build trust and improve relations between the two nations.

As the world's fastest-growing major economies with lengthy histories of civilization, China and India have long been linked with each other both geographically and culturally.

Since the establishment of diplomatic ties in April 1950, both countries have upheld the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. Over the past six decades, friendship and cooperation have been the main rhythms of the relationship between the two neighbors.

With concerted efforts by leaders from both countries, China and India have built a strategic and cooperative partnership for common peace and prosperity. In recent years, the healthy relationship between China and India has maintained good momentum as evidenced by the holistic development in all fields.

The following is a brief introduction of the landmark events in the China-India relationship over recent years:

In June 2003, marked improvement was made in China-India relations following Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's landmark visit to China. During his visit, the two sides signed a declaration on bilateral ties, defining the goal and guiding principle of bilateral ties as well as two-way cooperation in all fields.

In April 2005, Wen visited India to push for an all-round expansion of economic cooperation. During his visit, the two sides concluded the Agreement on the Political Parameters and Guiding Principles for the Settlement of the Boundary Question, marking the entry into a new stage of China-India border negotiations.

2006 also witnessed a gradual improvement in China-India relations when Chinese President Hu Jintao made a state visit in November to India and issued a Joint Declaration. The two sides developed Ten Strategies designed to further deepen the strategic and cooperative partnership between China and India.

In October 2007, the head of India's ruling Congress Party, Sonia Gandhi, paid a visit to China, becoming the first foreign political leader China received after the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party Committee (CPC).

In January 2008, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh paid an official visit to China as a guest of Wen. During his stay, the two sides signed a raft of cooperation documents covering such fields as construction, railway, agriculture, medicine and quality inspection.

In October 2009, Xie Zhenhua, vice minister of the National Development and Reform Commission of China, headed a delegation that visited India. During his stay, China and India signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) on cooperation in dealing with climate change, signaling an upgrading of China-Indian cooperation in the field.

The year 2010 marked the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and India. The two nations have conducted frequent exchanges of high-level visits and contacts.

On April 1, 2010, Hu, Wen and Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi exchanged congratulatory messages with their Indian counterparts President Pratibha Patil, Prime Minster Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna to mark the diplomatic anniversary.

In May 2010, Patil visited China. Hu, Wen, Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, and Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, held talks separately with Patil.

In July 2010, Wen and Yang met separately with India's visiting National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon.

From Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, 2010, Zhou Yongkang, a member of the Standing Committee of the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau and Secretary of Central Political and Legislative Committee, headed a delegation to pay a friendly visit to India. During his stay, Zhou also attended a seminar on the China-India relationship co-organized by the CPC and India Congress Party.

Source: Xinhua
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