Modi, Xi hold talks, will have informal summit in India next year

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"For us China and India can play more active role in today's world in promoting multilateralism, against unilateralism, to promote free trade and also cooperation on counterterrorism, extremism and separatism", he said.

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said on Saturday that India's position on the BRI "is spelled out", that India "supports all connectivity initiatives but they should be keeping in mind territorial sovereignty, integrity" as well as viability and sustainability in all areas.

Xi's visit will be preceded by a flurry of high-level meetings this year, including meetings between the foreign, defence and home ministers and the national security advisers.

Modi and Xi are likely to take stock of progress in implementation of decisions they had taken at the Wuhan informal summit, official sources said.

The two leaders also agreed on increasing bilateral trade to $100 billion by 2020, and Xi said China is ready to enhance agricultural imports from India.

Sharing some aspects of the almost 50-minute meeting, the foreign secretary said Xi described the Wuhan summit as a "new starting point" in bilateral relations between the two countries while Prime Minister called it as a "milestone" in ties which will help in developing mutual understanding and trust.

About Saturday's meeting, he said, "It was a substantive meeting and both leaders began by making a very positive assessment of the Wuhan summit".

On the occasion, President Mamnoon said that Pakistan supported the Chinese chairmanship of SCO and appreciated the various initiatives proposed by China in the organization during the previous year.

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Modi is also said that have acknowledged the Wuhan summit as a "milestone in relationship", one which would help develop mutual understanding and trust and take the relationship forward.

Apart from this, the two sides formally agreed to undertake a joint project in Afghanistan, pertaining to "capacity building".

"China and Pakistan will always support each other on issues involving each other's core interests, and safeguard common interests of the two countries as well as other developing countries", Xi said.

External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi will head a new mechanism to oversee people-to-people contacts, and will soon meet to discuss details.

In this context, Xi also referred to growing popularity of Indian films in China and particularly mentioned about films Dangal and Bahubali. The two militaries will continue to talk to each other to maintain peace, Gokhale said.

On the trade front, New Delhi agreed to the Chinese President's request to allow opening of a Bank of China branch in Mumbai, while China said it will let Indian pharmaceutical companies register for high-quality pharma products in the Chinese market and to allow India to export non-Basmati rice to China. It also enables China to provide data if the water level exceeds a mutually agreed level during the non-flood season.

These moves are seen as attempts by India and China to bring ties back on an even keel after the 73-day-long tense military standoff between India and China previous year over their unsettled boundary dispute.

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