India, China need to build ''more convergence'': Rao

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Singapore, Jan 14 (PTI) Seeking "more convergence andcommon ground" in Sino-India ties, Foreign Secretary NirupamaRao has said "a conflicted or contest-ridden" relationshipcannot help the two countries, which should engage in atransparent dialogue to ensure peace and stability in theregion.

"It is a truism that between two such large countriessuch as ours, relations will be complex and with continuingareas of divergence. The challenge remains to build moreconvergence and common ground," Rao said.

The remarks made yesterday were part of her speech atSingapore Consortium for China-India Dialogue on "RabindranathTagore''s Vision of India and China: a Twenty First CenturyPerspective"

"I believe that the ballast must come from deeperdialogue which is defined by greater transparency,understanding the relevance and import of the words ofthinkers like Tagore, realising that a conflicted or contest-ridden relationship between India and China can do neither anygood, that peace and stability for an Asian century flows fromthe enduring strength of a well-functioning interactionbetween these two countries," Rao said.

She said India and China share what is termed as astrategic and cooperative partnership for peace and prosperitytoday. Their relations have, in the last decade particularly,grown increasingly multi-faceted.

These two big economies of Asia are interacting closelywith each other, both in terms of bilateral trade, but also onissues concerning the global economic situation, Rao said.

The two governments have decided to institute a strategiceconomic dialogue as a measure of the increasing complexityand sophistication of their negotiations on economic issues,Rao said.

As preparations are on to celebrate the 150thanniversary of Tagore''s birth, she noted that the year willalso mark the 87th anniversary of his memorable visit toChina.

"He went to China with a message of love and brotherhoodthat he felt symbolised the essence of the ties between thetwo countries," Rao said.

Tagore truly believed in the mutually beneficialinteractive relationship between the two great civilisationsof China and India, she said.

"He passionately advocated the reopening of the pathbetween the two countries that had become obscured through thecenturies," the Foreign Secretary said.

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