Soon after Prime Minister Modi met Chinese president Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit, external affairs ministry held a press briefing informing that both the leaders discussed a range of issues including that Xi Jinping will visit India for an informal summit. Both the leaders also reviewed the bilateral relationship between China and India.
Prime Minister's first engagement after he arrived in the afternoon of June 13 to Bishkek was with President of People's Republic of China Xi Jinping. The meeting that was originally scheduled for 20 minutes but went on for a longer period and both leaders had a warm and cordial discussion, said the MEA.
Informing about the upcoming informal summit between Prime Minister and Chinese President, Foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale said:
"The two leaders agreed that while the outcome of Wuhan was a positive one it is necessary now to take it to new areas. In that context, both sides agreed that they need to increase their expectations from the relationship. Prime Minister welcomed Xi Jinping for the second informal summit after Wuhan and said that both sides must prepare thoroughly for the summit. President Xi Jinping warmly confirmed his readiness to visit India this year and said that he was looking forward to discussing all issues from a strategic and a long-term perspective and that both sides should now begin intensive preparation for the visit."
Informing that the bilateral talks between the two leaders were positive, the foreign secretary said,
"Both leaders did a review of the bilateral relations and agreed that there is a new momentum in the bilateral relationship since the Wuhan summit in April last year. PM specifically noted that what has improved was strategic communications at all levels."
Further, the foreign secretary said that the focus of this bilateral meet was to reaffirm that in the five year's term of PM Modi, which was in line with the latest term of Xi Jinping
Two countries have a historic opportunity to move forward and address a number of issues and take India-China relation to a new level. The focus was to strengthen the relation between the two countries.
The foreign secretary also said that both sides agreed that next year is a critical year because it is the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between two countries and for this it has been decided that 70 important events will be held- 35 each in India and China. The responsibility of the same has been given to the foreign ministers of both the countries.
Prime Minister Modi and Chinese president Xi Jinping met for an informal summit in China's Wuhan last year. The Wuhan summit was largely credited to have turned around the bilateral relations soured by the 73-day-long Doklam standoff, triggered by Chinese troops attempts to build a road close to Indian border in an area also claimed by Bhutan in 2017.
India had objected to it as it came close to key highway connecting with North Eastern states. The standoff ended after Chinese troops halted plans to build the road.
After the Wuhan summit, both the countries stepped up efforts to improve relations on different spheres including the military to military ties. Modi and Xi issued strategic guidance to their militaries to strengthen communications to build trust and understanding, a move aimed at avoiding a Doklam-like situation in the future.