The Consulate Holds an Online Round-table Forum

On August 25, the Consulate General in Mumbai and the Thakur School of Management (TIMSR), a well-known institute based in Mumbai, jointly held an online round-table forum themed Sino-Indian relations. Consul General Tang Guocai, Sudheendra Kulkarni, advisor to the former Indian Prime Minister, Ajit Ranade, a well-known economist, NS Rawat, Secretary-General of the India-China Business Association, Zhu Dacheng, Executive Director of Sany Group India, Pankaj Natu, Dean of TIMSR and other experts of various sectors were present for the penal discussion. Nearly 400 people, including students of the college and representatives from industry and commerce, academia, culture and media participated in the forum. Deputy Consul General Wang Yanhua, Economic and Commercial Counselor Liu Mingming and other consulate staff attended the event.

Consul General Tang delivered a keynote speech entitled "Deeper Understanding, Shared Future", focusing on the following "1-2-3-4" on China-India people-to-people connectivity and economic and cultural exchanges under the new situation.

First, focus on one theme. Deeper understanding is the most important theme of mutual concern for the two countries and the people. Although the border disputes, the pandemic, the situation in Pakistan, Afghanistan and other related issues are frequently reported, it is not suitable to draw any conclusion from incomplete data or information. Mentality leads to the way out. For the two major developing countries China and India, deeper understanding and mutual trust are the basis for all exchanges and cooperation.

Second, dispel two typical Western lies, one claiming that China will seek hegemony or expansionism on the way to a super power, and the other hyping that let India replace China. There is an old Chinese saying that "a thief reporting a theft". Looking at this world, it is clear at a glance who is sending troops to interfere in other countries internal affairs, and who is seeking hegemony. There is also an Chinese fable of "uprooting the seedlings and promoting the growth", which will only be counterproductive if divorced from reality. The logic behind these two lies is that China (India) cannot be strong, and China and India could not live in harmony, so that the West can continue to maintain hegemony. It must be pointed out that China has always advocated true multilateralism. Our diplomatic principles and cultural genes have emphasized that hegemony leads to decline of a nation. The marginal effect of Western ideology manipulation strategy is declining, and lies will go bankrupt sooner or later.

Third, recognize the three miracles of political, economic and social development in China. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. From a small boat to a big party, the Communist Party of China is the most successful start-up team worldwide, leading the most populous country from debility to stability and harmony. China’s reform and opening-up have created an economic miracle, transforming China from poverty and weakness to the world’s second-largest economy, eliminating absolute poverty, building a well-off prosperous society in an all-round way and striding towards the goal of common prosperity through high-quality development. The Chinese civilization is the only splendid civilization that has stretched uninterrupted to this day and is our mine of wealth and strength. The concept of community of shared future is the crystallization of historical and cultural wisdom, and only by helping each other in the same boat can it remain stable and cover far distance.

Fourth, explore and deepen the communication channels in four aspects with an open mind, namely, people-to-people bonds, development cooperation, political exchanges, youth and sports interaction. Education, culture, media, economics and other social circles of both countries should be front-runners to promote cultural philosophy, carry forward interactions between Xuanzang, Gandhi, Tagore and other sages, and connect people. China is India's largest trading partner. In the context of globalization, economic interdependence is common thing. We should not engage in economic nationalism and confuse the so-called economic independence with the struggle for national independence from Western colonists. As saying goes: white cat, black cat, the one who catches the mouse is a good cat. Governments and NGOs at all levels should emancipate their minds, listen to the voice of the people, and promote China and India to be partners in common development, not to be gladiators in Western traps, and to work together to break the Western monopoly of developing rights, so as to seek a higher-quality and more dignified life for the people.

Last but not the least, Consul Tang said that there are many college students present today, and the younger generation is the future of the nation as well as pioneers for friendly exchanges and friendship. Congratulations to the Chinese and Indian athletes for their achievements in the Tokyo Olympics, 2020. The Beijing Winter Olympics early next year is an excellent platform for Chinese and Indian youth to become sports friends. One world, One dream: faster, higher, stronger, together. Let’s connect our hearts and share our future together.

The Indian experts responded positively in their speeches, and elaborated from political, cultural, economic and trade aspects, pointing out that since World War II, the United States has invaded 72 countries and regions, which is a typical hegemonic act. The current situation in Afghanistan is a historic symbol of the failure of American hegemony. India should stand on the right side of history, and strengthen exchanges and cooperation with China in regional and multilateral affairs. Chinese and Indian cultures have many things in common, and both sides should vigorously promote the implementation of cooperation projects at grassroots levels, especially the Chinese language education.

Participants also believed that China’s economy is undergoing transformation and upgrading from old to new, from pollution to green, from export-oriented to consumption-driven, and from traditional to the future. India has also made great achievements in many fields, and India and China have common development opportunities and huge potential for cooperation, also, it is necessary to complement each other and unleash the energy of "India + China". China is India’s second-largest export market and India is China’s sixth-largest export market, while India’s exports to China are growing rapidly. Bilateral economic and trade complementary is very constructive to promote the transformation and development of India’s economy. Representatives of Chinese-funded enterprises introduced their views on the investment environment, opportunities and challenges in the Indian market, and expressed their commitment to localization and technology transfer, actively giving back to the society, and sincerely looking forward to China and India to deepen mutual understanding and benefit the people.

The atmosphere was positive, warm and friendly. Many Indian media conducted on-site interviews and reports on the event.

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