China on Tuesday announced the visit of its Foreign Minister Qin Gang to India for this week’s G20 meeting, the first such high-level visit from the country in almost one year.
Mr. Qin, at the invitation of India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, will attend the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in New Delhi on March 2, a statement from the Foreign Ministry said.
“In a world fraught with uncertainties and struggling to reboot the economy, countries have much to do to overcome the challenges to deliver on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said. “As the premier forum for international cooperation, it is important that the G20 focuses on challenges on the global economy and development, and plays a bigger role in driving the global economic recovery and global development. China stands ready to work with all parties to ensure that the G20 Foreign Ministers’ meeting will send a positive signal on multilateralism, food and energy security and development cooperation.”
While the focus of Mr. Qin’s visit is the G20 meet, it also marks the first high-level visit from China to India since March 2022.
Last week also saw the first visit by a top Indian official to China in more than three years.
Joint Secretary (East Asia) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Shilpak Ambule held talks in Beijing with senior Chinese border officials and also met with Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Hua Chunying.
The 26th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC) in Beijing marked the first such talks held in-person since July 2019.
Bilateral exchanges have been stalled since early 2020 and the start of the pandemic. Ties between the neighbours have also been plunged into tensions following China’s mobilisation of troops and multiple transgressions across the Line of Actual Control (LAC) starting in April 2020.
At last week’s talks, both sides discussed proposals for disengaging in the two remaining friction areas along the LAC to create conditions to “restore normalcy” in relations, according to statements issued after the talks.