CHINA / National

China, India can achieve win-win through cooperation
Updated: 2006-04-24 16:05

Described as "dragon" and "elephant" in Asia, China and India, the two largest developing nations of the world, can achieve win-win by cooperation rather than competition, said experts attending the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2006 running on April 21-23.

The rising of these two countries has caught worldwide attention. The Asia Development Bank projected the economic growth of Asia in 2006 at 7.2 percent, which mainly gains power from the fast growth of China and India.

During the annual meetings, a session titled "India and China - Strength in Partnership" was held to discuss the economic relations between the two countries.

Robert Morse, CEO of Citigroup Asia Pacific, said China and India can both be winners, but they need to cooperate rather than compete with each other. The two countries can cooperate more in fields such as IT, steel and medicine.

George Yeo, foreign minister of Singapore, said the Sino-India relations are at their best. "The world is big enough for both countries and each is too big to be contained by the other," he quoted Indian Prime Minister Manmoham Singh as saying.

For the long-term health of the global economy, it is important for the major Asia economies, including China and India, to play a greater leadership role, Yeo said.

As to economic cooperation between the two countries, some people say that as developing countries, China and India are competitive in attracting investment, expanding trade and increasing their own influence.

And differences in economic policies and investment environment also hinder the deepening of their cooperation.

However, Morse said they have just seen the competition between "dragon" and "elephant" while turning a blind eye to the potential in cooperation between the two countries.

He said he does not believe that there is solely competition between the two countries, since in a competition, the winner can only be one. In this case, both countries can hold an important place in global economic arena.

His words were echoed by other delegates. They agreed that the two countries should strengthen their cooperation and find common interests.

Manoranjan Mohanty, professor of the Institute of Chinese Studies, Delhi, said in the past the Indian government took a conservative attitude to China, but now ordinary citizens have become more friendly to China.

In 2005, trade volume between the two countries reached 18.7 billion U.S. dollars, up 38 percent year-on-year. During the last meeting of China-India Joint Economic Group, the two ministers of commerce agreed to take serious efforts to make their bilateral trade more sustainable and diversified.

Wang Jinzhen, assistant chairman of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), said the two countries still lack personnel exchanges and investment. Statistics with the CCPIT show that the investment that China has made in India registers 40 million U.S. dollars while India's investment in China is 100 million dollars.

Wang said there is potentiality between the two countries and China will improve their cooperation by finding out more fields and increase investment.

While Vinay Kwatra, deputy chief of mission of the Indian Embassy to China, said India has adopted a forward-looking approach in building a mutually beneficial relationship with China. "India regards China as its partner and there is growing maturity in our relationship based on political understanding and trust."

Ken Torok, president of UPS Asia Pacific, suggested that just like China learns from India's IT industry, India can also learn from China in its experiences such as how China attracts so much investment and thus creates more jobs.


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