Positive vibes on Chabahar deal

Updated - November 17, 2021 04:37 am IST

Published - May 26, 2016 04:56 am IST - BEIJING:

Two commentaries: one in Xinhuanet, China’s official press agency and another in Global Times, a tabloid that belongs to the Peoples’ Daily (the official mouthpiece of the Communist Party of China) stable have positively assessed the Indian investment in the Chabahar port project in Iran.

The Global Times commentary, written by Qian Feng, strongly objects to the perception that the project “is aimed at countering the [Gwadar sea port project in Pakistan that is part of the] China Pakistan Economic Corridor”. It argues that the port offers a strategic foothold for India in the “northern Indian Ocean [the Arabian Sea]” and access to Central Asia and this must not be seen as detrimental to Chinese interests in the region.

The Xinhua commentary by Tian Dongdong blames the West for the distorted commentary on the perceived competition between India and China with respect to the Chabahar and Gwadar ports. Both the Xinhua and the Global Times articles focussed on the positive momentum in India-China relations with the latter saying that relations forged by either country with any other nation should not be seen as part of a “zero sum context”.

The two reports in the Chinese media coincided with the visit of the President Pranab Mukherjee to Guangzhou and Beijing. Meanwhile, sources in the ministry of external affairs said that the visit’s purpose was to bring about a “calming” emphasis and to bring focus on the fact that the initiatives taken in recent years to expand ties are on track.

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