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Modi to meet Chinese PM for first time at Myanmar

PTI 10 Nov 2014, 20:15:27 PM IST

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will have his first meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on the sidelines of the East Asia summit at Nay Pyi Taw in Myanmar as he is set to meet several world leaders bilaterally there and in Australia.

Li was among the first leaders to have greeted Modi over phone after the latter was sworn in as Prime Minister in May this year. He had pledged then to build a “robust” relationship with Modi's government.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin told reporters today there will be a “structured” meeting and delegation-level talks between the Prime Minister and the Chinese Premier in Myanmar. Li is second-ranked in the Communist Party of China (CPC) after President Xi.

Modi will also have an opportunity to interact with Chinese President Xi Jinping during an informal meet of the leaders of the five-nation BRICS bloc on the fringes of the G-20 summit in Brisbane.

Modi and Xi are likely to enhance their rapport struck during their meetings at the BRICS summit in July in Brazil and during the President's visit to India in September.

The Prime Minister will reach Nay Pyi Taw tomorrow afternoon to attend the ASEAN-India summit and the East Asia Summit on Wednesday and Thursday.

Although Xi's India visit was, in some sense, was overshadowed by the stand-off in Chumar along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), Indian and Chinese officials are apparently keen to focus on the positives, such as the 20 billion dollar investment pledge from China, and to take concrete steps to move forward agreements such as the setting up of China-dedicated industrial parks in India.

Modi will have bilateral meets with his British and Canadian counterparts David Cameron and Stephen Harper, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy Brey on the fringes of the G20 summit on November 15-16, Akbaruddin said.

Meetings between Modi and other participating leaders are not being ruled out.

The Prime Minister will travel to Australia from Myanmar on November 14.