November 24, 2018 11:57 AM NPT
KATHMANDU, Nov 24: The 21st round of border talks between India and China has been underway in China's southwestern Sichuan province since Saturday morning, media reports said.
The meeting began Saturday morning and is expected to conclude later today, the Press Trust of India reported on Saturday morning referring to the Indian officials involved in the meeting.
Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi are leading their respective delegations.
Besides the border dispute, the two senior officials at the picturesque Dujiangyan city, would also review the progress made in bilateral ties since the Wuhan Summit between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping in April, the Press Trust of India said in its report.
Doval and Wang are the designated special representatives for border talks between India and China.
This is the first round of talks for Wang after he succeeded State Councillor Yang Jiechi earlier this year.
China and India have given utmost importance to their border talks, according to the Indian and Chinese media reports.
At a press conference on November 21, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang presented an upbeat picture of the bilateral ties.
"We have properly managed the differences through dialogue and consultation. The border areas on the whole maintained stability,” the PTI quoted the foreign ministry spokesman as saying.
The reported, referring to the officials, said that this round of talks is focused more on reviewing the progress on trade and maintenance of peace at borders than movement towards a solution to the border dispute as India is headed for general elections next year.
"Both countries highly value this meeting, which will be the first after Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi became the special representative," Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Geng said, adding that Sino-Indian relations have steadily developed this year with deeper cooperation in various fields.
The two sides have kept close communication on border issues, and have properly managed differences through dialogue and negotiations, which contributed to the stability of the border areas, China’s Global Times reported earlier this week.
The two countries' special representatives will discuss the border issue based on the consensus reached by leaders of the two countries, and advance the negotiation process based on the progress achieved by the two countries, Geng said earlier.
The two sides will properly manage border differences, and exchange views on key bilateral and major regional and international issues, he said.
The 20th Special Representatives' Meeting was held in New Delhi in December 2017, during which Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Doval agreed to properly handle border issues to jointly safeguard peace and tranquility in their border areas, China’s state-owned Xinhua News Agency reported in December 2017.