Offering a handshake across the Himalayas, Chinese premier Li Keqiang on Tuesday reminded his Indian audience that “a distant relative may not be useful as a neighbour.”
While Li could be referring to the growing India-US ties while reciting the old Chinese saying, the premier also talked about what all Indians love to hear — the promise of a balanced trade, sorting all issues, including the boundary question.
“A few clouds in the sky cannot shut out brilliant sun rays, that is our friendship,” he asserted at a lecture on India-China ties.
Stressing on shaking hands from across the Himalayas, he said it will give a bird’s eye view of bilateral and world affairs.
Recalling his earlier trip to India in 1986, the Chinese premier said: “In these 27 years, I haven’t had the opportunity to use this (Namaste word)”, which he used to began his speech.
“Twenty seven years ago, I visited India and I was deeply impressed by India’s vast territory, time-honoured civilisation as well as hard-working and talented people,” he said, adding the fond memories were still fresh in his mind.
Li promised to address India’s concern on trade, cross- border rivers and emphasised that both countries had the wisdom to resolve outstanding issues.
Chinese premier woos businessmen
On his first visit to Mumbai, Li Keqiang had two things on mind — working together to create miracles and increasing the bilateral trade between the world’s two most populated nations.
Addressing a gathering of about 250 Indian businessmen at Mumbai’s Taj Mahal Hotel, Keqiang said the purpose of his visit was to establish newer ties between the two nations.
“China and India are developing economies and could be important partners… The issue of trade and investment between the two nations needs to grow fast and expanded further,” he said.
Keqiang talked about his meeting with the Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry and IT services solutions provided by the company to many banks in China. He also sent out invitations to the Indian business community.
“Just as India’s IT solution which has competitive edge, other sectors too have great space for the same in China,” he said.