FTA between India, China can spur trade: Chinese envoy

Chai pe charcha in China PM Narendra Modi and Xi Jinping's tea diplomacy

The long-standing border issue also figured in the meeting where Modi and Xi made a decision to give "strategic guidance" to their armies to prevent a Doklam-like military stand-off in 2017.

The summit in Wuhan - the favourite holiday spot of revolutionary Chinese leader Mao Zedong - is being seen as an effort by India and China to rebuild trust and improve ties that were hit by the 73-day-long Dokalam standoff a year ago.

Gokhale said the two leaders reviewed developments in India-China relations from the strategic and long-term perspective and chose to implement various confidence-building measures which had already been agreed upon by the two sides. "In the next step, the two countries should make a comprehensive plan for cooperation and further enhance strategic communication [to enable] timely negotiation on major issues". Also, no aides except their translators were present with them.

They are to continue talks on Saturday with a walk along the lake, a boat ride and lunch together.

Chinese soldiers had intruded into Indian territory in Chumar area of Ladakh in September 2014 during Xi's India visit.

On the second day of his China trip, Prime Minister Narender Modi had a "chai pe charcha" or a discussion over tea with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomed Mr Modi warmly on Friday and hosted a grand welcome ceremony for him at the Hubei Provincial Museum in Wuhan. "It will undoubtedly give impetus and new dynamics to China-India relations", Boris Volkhonsky, associate professor of the Institute of Asian and African Studies, Moscow State University, said. But the same thing can not be said about India because it is a democracy and its bureaucracy is not as tightly controlled and efficient as China's. The understanding arrived when the Modi and Xi met previous year on the sidelines of the SCO summit in Astana in June.

They underlined that trade should be balanced, it should be sustainable, and that the two sides should take advantage of the complementarities between the two economies.

The meeting - which wound up on Saturday and was billed as a way for Xi and Modi to reset a fractious relationship - caps months of intensifying diplomatic exchanges that have seen visits to China from India's foreign minister Sushma Swaraj and national security adviser Ajit Doval.

Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of International Relations, said the two leaders wanted to improve relations after the Doklam crisis.

Both nations say they are committed to solving long-standing border disagreements through dialogue, but progress has been glacial.

In the process of contact between the leaders of the two countries, it is inevitable to talk about the relationship between the two countries, and it is also a question that will inevitably be touched upon, " Mr. Kong said. This will be the first such project in the war-ravaged country by India and China.

India would naturally want the Chinese to loosen their stranglehold on these countries so that they are more amenable to Indian influence and trade deals.

India and China are both expanding their footprint in their region.

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