Chinese premier promises to narrow trade imbalance with India

Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang said Tuesday that Beijing will address and mitigate the trade imbalance between China and India.

Speaking to Indian government and industry officials in New Delhi, Li said, "As for Indian concerns over the trade deficit, the Chinese side is willing to provide facilitations for more Indian products to access the Chinese market. I am confident we have the ability to mitigate the trade imbalance between our two countries."

China is India's largest trading partner with bilateral trade at $66.5 billion in 2012-13, according to official figures.

Li further stated Beijing understood balanced trade was "crucial" for healthy bilateral relations with India.

"China never had the intention to pursue a trade surplus. Only a dynamic trade balance is a sustainable trade relation," he said.

Calling for enhanced "people-to-people contact" between the two sides, he said, "Our policy should be not to contain each other, but to forge a developing relationship."

Li also promised future cooperation along China's western border with India as China plans to develop its western region, thus creating employment, trade and commerce opportunities for the Indian neighbors.

Commenting on the importance of stronger bilateral ties, he said when India and China speak in one voice, "the world shall listen."

"We both shall be working toward the direction of creating a better future for Asia and the whole world at large," Li said.

The Chinese premier is currently on the first leg of his four-country tour that will also take him to Pakistan, Switzerland and Germany.