Updated: June 24, 2016 2:10:03 pm
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The prime minister is on a two-day visit to attend the annual summit of the SCO with an aim to expand India’s engagement with the China-dominated grouping in areas of security, defence and energy.
According to the Ministry of External Affair (MEA), PM Modi urged China to make a fair and objective assessment of India’s application on merit.
Prime Minister Modi’s meeting with President Xi Jinping assumes significance in the backdrop of India’s attempts to get the membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
In the two-day summit that begins today, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) will start the process of India’s accession to the grouping as a full-fledged member along with Pakistan.
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) June 23, 2016
However, the spotlight is on Modi’s bilateral meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping later in the day during which the Prime Minister is expected to seek China’s support for India’s membership at the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) that controls access to sensitive nuclear technology.
Giving clear indications of its opposition to India’s bid for entry into the atomic trading club, China had yesterday underlined the differences within NSG members, saying “parties are yet to see eye-to-eye on this issue”. It, however, said it will play a constructive role in the discussions.
The decision to become a member of the SCO was taken last year following Prime Minister’s outreach during the BRICS summit.
Watch Video: India’s NSG Bid: Modi Proposes, Many Oppose It
India’s presence in the extended neighbourhood has been raising to higher levels as it has become a major player in a wide range of areas.
Cooperation on the part of the security, energy and anti terrorism is also on the agenda.
Ahead of his visit, the Prime Minister said on twitter last night that he is looking forward to fruitful outcomes at the Summit particularly in the field of economic co-operation.
He said, India attaches great importance to its relations with Central Asia and always seeks to expand economic and people-to-people ties with the region.
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