Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday has called for
more people-to-people contacts with China to remove misconceptions
Singh called for the bridging of the "knowledge gap" between
India and China and sustained effort to ensure proper mutual
awareness in a speech to a packed audience at the Chinese Academy
of Social Science.
"We need a broad based comprehensive dialogue at the level of
intelligentsia, media, non-governmental professionals and the
worlds of culture and arts," Singh said.
He also highlighted other key focus areas for the future
"We need to expand our cooperation in a broad range of
functional sectors. We would like to learn from China's success in
the creation of physical infrastructure, strategies to provide
productive employment outside the agriculture sector and poverty
alleviation," said Singh.
Other areas for potential cooperation were science and
technology, public health, education, institution building, water
resource management and disaster management, he said.
India and China should harness complementary strengths and
synergies in the areas of trade and business. India's growing
consumer market, skilled human resources, and software excellence
together with China's large market, its manufacturing prowess and
cost competitiveness provided the platform for exponential growth
in the economic ties, he said.
China is India's second largest trading partner and the two
countries agreed to set a bilateral trade target of 60 billion U.S.
dollars by the year 2010.
Singh is in China for a three-day visit that began on Sunday. It
was his first visit since taking office in 2004.
(Xinhua News Agency January 15, 2008)