Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Astana, Kazakhstan, June 9, 2017. (Xinhua/Yao Dawei)
ASTANA, June 9 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping met here Friday with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, calling for closer cooperation between the two countries.
Faced with profound and complex changes of the international situation, China and India, as the world's two largest developing countries, should pay more attention to cooperation and go ahead with each other as partners, so as to instill more momentum into each other's development and contribute to world peace, stability and common development, said the Chinese president.
The two leaders are in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan, to attend the 17th meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
Xi said China attaches great importance to its ties with India and stands ready to work with the Indian side to enhance political mutual trust, link their development strategies, deepen practical cooperation and maintain coordination and collaboration in international and regional affairs, so as to advance their strategic cooperative partnership in a sustained, healthy and stable way.
The Chinese president called for more high-level interactions, institutionalized exchanges, strategic communication and policy alignment between the two countries.
China and India should also boost trade and investment cooperation and work together for earlier harvest from large-scale cooperation projects in such areas as production capability, industrial parks and railway construction, Xi said.
Xi said the two countries should make joint efforts to promote regional connectivity and shared development, align their development initiatives, advance the building of the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar corridor with a view to substantial progress at an early date, and boost cooperation in the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
The president said the two sides should increase communication and coordination in multilateral affairs and appropriately control and handle disputes and sensitive problems.
He also called for more sub-national, cultural and tourism exchanges, among others, between the two neighbors.
Noting that India is about to become a full member of the SCO at the Astana summit, Xi offered congratulations to the Indian side, adding that China is willing to cooperate with India within the SCO framework and contribute to the healthy and sustained development of the organization.
Hailing the long-lasting friendship between the two countries with ancient civilizations, Modi said a sound India-China relationship will help stabilize the volatile international situation.
The prime minister said the two sides should tap their potential in cooperation, strengthen communication and coordination in international affairs, respect each other's core concerns and appropriately handle their disputes.
The Indian side is grateful for China's support for India's accession to the SCO and will work closely with China in the organization, Modi said.
The SCO, established in 2001, is a regional political, economic and security organization that groups China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan as full members.
In 2016, India and Pakistan, two SCO observers, signed the SCO Memorandum of Obligations, thereby kick-starting the formal process of joining the SCO as full members.