The military exchanges between China and India grew rapidly after this year’s informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping at Wuhan, said Indian envoy to China Gautam Bambawale on Tuesday. While over 1.4 million Indians travelled to China, only 300,000 of over 144 million Chinese tourists visited India last year. India is pitching for tourists.
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“This is a good development as we cannot solve the issues between us if we are not direct and frank with each other. Strategic communication is important not merely between the top leadership of our countries but also between our diplomats, our military officers and our trade negotiators,” Bambawale said.
“After Wuhan, our military exchanges have not merely resumed but grown rapidly. Our military commanders are now talking to each other more frankly and more candidly than ever before,” he said while talking at the fifth discussion between the Indian Council of World Affairs and the Chinese People’s Institute for Foreign Affairs.
Director General of the Indian Council for World Affairs T C A Raghavan and Director of the Institute for China Studies, Delhi Ashok Kantha also participated in the dialogue. Raghavan was former Indian envoy to Pakistan and Kantha was ex-Indian envoy to China.
Bambawale also invited China to join the international solar alliance (ISA) and announced plans to launch an ‘Incredible India’ advertisement campaign in the Chinese media to attract more Chinese tourists to India.
He said India has recently launched the International Solar Alliance with a view to grow the use of solar energy by providing developing countries with technology, expertise and finance.
“China herself is a leading player in the development and spread of solar energy. India has invited China to join the International Solar Alliance. We hope China will do so soon,” the envoy said.
Pointing at the recent campaigns launched by Minister of State for Tourism, K J Alphons in different Chinese cities to attract more tourists, he said “China will soon witness the famous ‘Incredible India’ advertisements on their TV channels, in shopping malls and on city buses”.
India is pitching for tourists as only 300,000 of over 144 million Chinese tourists who travelled overseas visited India last year whereas over 1.4 million Indians travelled to China.