'Nathu La to enhance Sino-Indian ties' | india | Hindustan Times
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'Nathu La to enhance Sino-Indian ties'

india Updated: Jul 06, 2006 01:25 IST

On the eve of re-opening of the historic Nathu La Pass, China on Wednesday said the border trade route will enhance economic cooperation with India besides developing bilateral relations.

"We believe this will further enhance the trade and economic cooperation between the two countries and the development of China-India relations," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Jiang Yu said in Beijing while commenting on the re-opening of the Pass.

The Nathu La Pass, at 4,545 metres above sea level, is located some 460 kilometres from Tibet's regional capital Lhasa and 550 kilometres from Kolkata. It used to be an important trade passage between China and India but was closed in 1962 amid border conflicts.

The re-opening of Nathu La was initially agreed to in 2003 during an historic visit to Beijing by the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

As per the minutes of negotiations signed between Chinese and Indian officials in Lhasa last month, the two countries will reopen the trade route on Thursday with two border trade markets -- the Renqinggang market in Tibet and Changgu market of India.

Renqinggang market is 16 kilometres northeast of the Nathu La Pass. It will open from Monday through Thursday between June 1 and September 30 every year.

The business hours will last from 10.00 am To 6.00 pm, said officials in Yadong county of Xigaze Prefecture, where the market is located, Xinhua news agency reported.