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Xi praises PM, calls him an old friend of the Chinese people

October 23, 2013 19:19 IST

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday praised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's contribution to the improvement of Sino-India relations.

Xi, during his meeting with the prime minister said, Singh is an old friend of the Chinese people who has made important contributions to the development of China-India relations.

He also praised Singh as a senior politician of India who started the country's economic reform process in the 1990s and has helped India make remarkable progress.

The President also recalled his last meeting with Singh in Durban, South Africa, during which they reached an important consensus on the development of bilateral relations, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

China-India ties have entered a phase of comprehensive development, Xi said.

He asked Singh to extend his greetings to President Pranab Mukherjee and President of the Congress Party Sonia Gandhi.

Singh said he will convey Xi's greetings to Mukherjee and Gandhi. He said the relationship with China is a "high priority" in India's foreign policy.

Before the meeting, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang held talks with Singh and the two prime ministers also witnessed the signing of nine agreements. 

V S Chandrasekar and K J M Varma in Beijing
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