Home>News Center>China

Singapore: China-India ties to anchor new Asia century
Updated: 2005-08-18 16:03

Good relations between China and India will form the foundation of a "new architecture of cooperation" bringing together East, Southeast and South Asia, Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo said, AFP reported.

Yeo said an inaugural East Asia Summit in Kuala Lumpur in December that will gather the leaders of 16 countries, including China and India, is important to the emergence this new regional landscape.

Asia faces three main challenges that could shape the region's future, one of them "the construction of a new architecture of cooperation in Asia itself, bringing together East, Southeast and South Asia," he said.

"This process, which will take many years, is already underway. If we succeed, the centre of the world economy will move to Asia in this century and a new East-West trade dwarfing anything which had been seen previously will come to be.

"Good relations between China and India will be the foundation of such a new architecture... The convening of the first East Asia Summit at the end of this year in Kuala Lumpur is therefore of great significance."

Yeo was speaking at an international conference in Singapore as part of activities marking the 600th anniversary of legendary Chinese mariner Zheng He's round-the-world voyages.

December's summit in the Malaysian capital will gather the leaders of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as well as China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, India and New Zealand.

ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Yeo noted the recent improvements in Chinese-Indian ties, highlighted by improving trade relations and an agreement between Beijing and New Delhi on principles for settling their border dispute.

China became India's second largest trading partner last year.

"Provided we do not trip ourselves, the countries of Southeast Asia will be swept along by the re-emergence of China and India on the global stage. This Asian transformation involves more than half the world's population and will define the 21st century," he said.

The two other challenges that could affect Asia are how Chinese-US ties are managed, and achieving harmony between Muslims and non-Muslims, Yeo said.

On Sino-US ties, Yeo said it was unlikely that their rivalry will lead to war, adding that the most likely scenario would be for them to cooperate and compete at the same time.

Management of relations between Muslims and non-Muslims in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Western China will also be important for the region's peace and economic development.

"Failure to do this will provide fertile ground for terrorist groups like Al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiyah to carry out their activities and recruit new members," he warned.

Chimpanzee suffers from smoking addiction
The tide is high but they're holding on
China, Russia military drills stage landing
  Today's Top News     Top China News

EU, China begin talks on textile row



Joint forces storm beaches at climax of drills



Taiwan students on mainland given level fees



Japan, China to jointly develop 4G mobile



China says market to decide yuan's value



CCTV sends record invitations for festival


  Temasek close to buying BOC stake - FT
  N. Korea nuclear talks likely as planned
  Japan, China to jointly develop 4G mobile
  Two bus accidents claim 33, injure 56
  NPC debates further raising tax threshold
  Farmers protest over alleged lead poisoning
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  News Talk  
  It is time to prepare for Beijing - 2008