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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 16.06.2015

A Parliamentary Delegation from the People’s Republic of China led by Mr. Zhang Dejiang, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress called on President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee yesterday (June 15, 2015) at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Welcoming the delegation, the President said Mr. Zhang’s visit to India reflects the growing relations between India and China. It will help revitalize India-China parliamentary exchanges especially since the last visit of the Chairman of the National People’s Congress took place 14 years ago. The last visit of Speaker of the Lok Sabha to China was also in 2006.

The President said there is need to intensify exchanges between the Parliaments of India and China. India considers it an important channel for enhancing mutual understanding. India attaches the highest priority to its relations with China and is committed to further developing friendly and cooperative relations. India’s relations with China have witnessed all round progress in recent years. India-China bilateral trade for the year 2014 stood at USD 70.59 billion compared to last year, having grown by 7.9 per cent. While India remains committed to exploiting the full potential of its economic cooperation, the trade deficit is a matter of concern. It is good that a high level group has been set up to examine how the deficit can be reduced.

The President invited Chinese companies to increase their involvement in India’s manufacturing sector, stating that there is no reason why Chinese companies should not take advantage of India’s ‘Make in India’ initiative. The President expressed appreciation of the Chairman’s high political standing as Member of the Standing Committee of the Politburo of the Chinese Communist Party and his deep knowledge of India-China relations. He expressed confidence that Mr. Zhang’s visit will provide new impetus to bilateral relations.

Responding to the President, the Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee said he was deeply impressed by the consensus amongst all high level leaders of India for greater cooperation with China. India and China are the largest developing countries and emerging markets. Both are neighbours. They together have a population of around 2.5 billion people. They have shown strong energy and vitality in recent times. Friendship between the two countries will not just benefit the people of the two countries but also have a potential impact on the entire region and the world.

This release issued at 1300 hrs.