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India, China interests intersect over wide arc: VP
Published on 21 Nov. 2009 10:58 PM IST
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Active partnership between New Delhi and Beijing and mutual sensitivity to each others’ concerns is necessary for stability, security and prosperity in the shared spaces in their near and distant neighbourhood, Vice President Hamid Ansari said here Saturday. Speaking at a conference ‘Emerging China: Prospects for Partnership in Asia’ at Sapru House here, organised by the Indian Council for World Affairs (ICWA) and Association for Asia Scholars (AAS), he said Indian and Chinese interests intersect over a wide arc extending from West Asia through Central Asia to South and Southeast Asia to East Asia. “The leaderships of India and China during the past two decades have cooperated in creating mutual political and economic stakes for mutual benefit. Economic cooperation between us has become a principal driver of our strategic and cooperative partnership for peace and prosperity,” he said. He added that cooperation does not preclude competition in global markets and such competition is constructive and beneficial rather than adversarial. He said a historian had noted that in the 16th century, all the great centres of world civilization were at a roughly similar stage of development, but technological innovation, intellectual liberty and a flourishing economic base provided the critical mix that allowed the West to dominate the world for almost five centuries. The vice president said that the Asian Relations Conference organised at Sapru House in 1947 was held at the end of one era and at the threshold of another. “Six decades later, the continent stands at the threshold of another Asian era. In this period the Nehruvian vision of Asia, indeed the geographical unity of the continent so to speak, has ceased to matter for geo-politics or economics,” he said. Ansari said that the way in which India and China deal with challenges such as terrorism, illegal migration, smuggling of drugs and arms and pandemics would affect large parts of Asia. The vice president’s remarks comes at a time when relations between the two countries have been under strain. There had been an a lot of rhetorical statements especially on the visit of the Tibetan religious leader Dalai Lama to Arunachal Pradesh, which is claimed by China. The countries have a six-decade-long boundary dispute. A number of Chinese scholars have been invited to the conference which will take place over three days. Besides, academics from universities in Europe, Singapore, Malaysia, Taipei, Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan and several retired Indian diplomats are also participating and presenting papers at the conference.

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