Beijing, Oct.23 : Visiting Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, arrived here on Thursday to attend seventh Asia Europe Summit (ASEM), a 45-nation grouping, and hoped that its deliberations would include solutions for the ongoing global financial crisis. This is the first time that India, Pakistan and Mongolia have been invited for the summit.
Soon after his arrival in the Chinese capital, Dr. Singh said: "As the Prime Minister of India, I sincerely hope that this meeting of minds between Asia and Europe will produce a solution to a lot of global problems, including the international financial crisis'.
The two-day summit will take place in the Great Hall of the People. Singh, who arrived here after completing a three-day visit to Japan, is expected to have meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese President Hu Jintao.
He would also meet the Presidents of Mongolia and Bulgaria-Nambaryn Enkhbayar and Georgi Parvarov; besides the Prime Ministers' of Italy and Vietnam - Silvio Berlusconi and Nguyen Tan Dung in a bid to promote bilateral ties and exchange views on issues of common interests.
There is no official word yet as to whether Dr. Singh would formally meet Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, who is also here to attend the summit.
India is attending the ASEM summit at the Head of Government level for the first time. In May 2007, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee had attended an ASEM ministerial meeting in Hamburg, Germany. By Naveen Kapoor