China says its finalisation of a free trade agreement with India is “very close”, with President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi also visiting the two countries to sign the deal on Friday.
The agreement would be the biggest trade deal between the two emerging markets and would open the door to billions of dollars in investment.
“The Chinese side has been very clear about the importance of this and I hope the Indian side will also be very clear,” Chinese Premier Li Keqiang told a press conference at a high-profile hotel in Beijing.
“This is very important for both our countries and the global trade system.”
Mr Modi said China and India would be able to share ideas and develop mutually beneficial and mutually beneficial relationships and said they would also develop the Chinese economy.
The Chinese leader said India had always been a big country, but in the past two decades it had been transformed into a global powerhouse.
“India has a huge population and has a great culture.
In the last two decades, India has been transformed from a small economy to a global power, but it has struggled to attract investment and foreign direct investment. “
Both our countries have become very prosperous and have become global leaders, so I think it is very good that we are able to strengthen our ties with each other.”
In the last two decades, India has been transformed from a small economy to a global power, but it has struggled to attract investment and foreign direct investment.
But the Chinese leaders have said they are committed to opening up India’s economy and forging closer economic ties.
“I am very pleased with the visit of Prime Minister Modi and his visit to the two states and also with President Li Kequiang to the city of Xi’an, which is a symbol of our friendship and our common interests,” Mr Li said.
“We have already decided to work together for the development of our economies, and we will not stop now.
We are very close to finalisation, and the President is here to make sure that everything is finalised as soon as possible.”
The agreement between China and the two Asian neighbours would be worth $US2.3 trillion ($2.6 trillion) in annual exports, according to the Chinese state-owned Xinhua news agency.
It is expected to help China diversify its trade away from commodity exports and boost domestic consumption, which are expected to account for most of India’s GDP growth in coming years.
China has been the main economic driver of India since the two sides signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement in 2010, and India has continued to rely on China for almost all its exports, even as it has begun a crackdown on corruption and increased its own economic activity.
Mr Xi is also visiting a number of Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai.
Mr Modi is expected, as he is on a five-nation trip to Asia, to visit Japan, South Korea, China, the Philippines and Vietnam.
The two leaders will also visit Japan and South Korea in a bid to build closer ties.