PM Modi, Xi discuss trade, ways to counter radicalisation on day one of informal summit

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping held discussions on a wide range of issues including the unbalanced trade that exists between the two countries and ways to counter radicalisation and terrorism.

Foreign Secretary Vijay K Gokhale while addressing a press conference here said, “There have been nearly five hours of quality time and discussion that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping of China have spent together. Most of it was one to one.”

The discussions between two leaders that took place over the meal stretched over 150 minutes.

“Discussions were very open and cordial. This was the quality time the two leaders spent together one-on-one. The rest of the two delegations were in fact in a separate location having dinner. The two leaders had detailed discussions on respective national visions, on the governance priorities. The Prime Minister explained that having been recently elected to a second term, he had received a new mandate for economic development,” said Gokhale.

The Chinese President, while acknowledging the mandate the Prime Minister got, said that “he was looking forward to working very closely with the PM on all issues during the next four and half years,” he informed.

“They also spoke about other developmental priorities. In particular, there was some discussion on trade-related and economic issues and how to enhance the trade volume and the trade value. It also included the issue of trade deficit,” Gokhale said.

“Some of the other topics included the challenges both countries face on account of terrorism. Acknowledgement that both countries are very complex, they are very diverse. Both leaders said that these were large countries. Radicalisation is a major concern for both, and both would work together to see that radicalisation and terrorism did not affect the fabric of our multicultural, multi-ethnic societies,” he added.

The Foreign Secretary also informed that both PM Modi and President Xi praised the excellent arrangements for the second informal summit.

“President Xi has himself said that he was overwhelmed by the welcome that was given to him at the airport and the arrangements made for him during his stay in Chennai. The visuals of PM Modi and Xi Jinping going around the monuments reflect the personal rapport that the two leaders have built between them over the two informal summits,” he said and added that during the visit at heritage sites both spoke of historic and trading links.

The Prime Minister also explained the importance of Ganesha temple to the Chinese President.

He also said that the two leaders were delighted by the performance of the artistes during the cultural programme.

“Tomorrow’s discussions, where they will be continuing one-to-one meetings, will focus on international issues and regional issues,” he said.

It is the second informal summit between Modi and Xi. The first informal summit was held in Wuhan last year.

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