外文标题：India becomes part of regional trading bloc despite Chinese opposition
NEW DELHI: India overcame resistance from China to become a part of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, an Asean + 6 grouping which is set to emerge as one of the most significant free trading blocs in the world, government sources confirmed.
Despite Beijing's reservations, India participated in the first round of negotiations held recently for RCEP because of support from several Asean nations led by Malaysia which insisted on India's involvement. The RCEP comprises China, India, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea apart from the 10-member Asean.
Government sources here as well as Malaysia's minister for international trade and industry Mustapa bin Mohamed told TOI that there was no objection any longer to India's participation in RCEP which seeks to achieve greater regional economic integration. "Let us not go into the past... the fact is that there is complete unanimity in RCEP now and that is what matters,'' he said in reply to a query about China's opposition to India's involvement.
According to government sources, there were certain issues raised by China over India's participation but Beijing had no option but to acquiesce after it noticed popular support for India. The second round of negotiations for RCEP will be held in Australia in September. The agreement is likely to come into effect in 2015.
After it was first proposed in the 2011 Asean summit, RCEP has been looked upon by Malaysia and other nations in the region as one of the most ambitious regional economic integration initiatives meant to integrate Asean economy with the global economy.
Asean countries, many of which have had territorial spats with Beijing in the South China Sea, look upon India as an important partner, not least Malaysia which is fast emerging as a crucial economic partner for India. While the FTA with Asean in services and investment is still being awaited, India's high commissioner to Malaysia Vijay Gokhale said Malaysia has already given India a lot bilaterally in services.
Replying to a query over the India-Asean FTA in services, Mohamed said an agreement will be signed in August.
Mindful of the interests of several Asean countries in South China Sea, India also came out in support of the demand for a code of conduct to avoid any conflict in the disputed region. "We urge all parties concerned to take forward these discussions towards adoption of a code of conduct in the South China Sea on the basis of consensus,'' foreign minister Salman Khurshid said at the 20th ARF meet in Brunei.
"We oppose the use or threat of use of force. We hope that all parties to disputes in the South China Sea region will abide by the 2002 Declaration on Conduct in the South China Sea and work together to ensure peaceful resolution of disputes, in accordance with international law, including 1982 UNCLOS,'' he added.
Good, India needs to pursue it's interests firmly regardless of what other world powers may want.
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ConversionIsCrime (New York)
If China keeps bullying ASEAN nations, ASEAN has no option but to welcome India. ASEAN biz can hit Chinese and this is clearly evident. China is enemy of India no matter what their media claims. Behind that squinted smile or poker face chinese is extreme hatred for India.
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Manish Gupte ()
When are forming India-Pakistan-Afganistan-Iran-Iraq!!
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Romi (singapore) replies to Manish Gupte
do we need more enemies ?? or terror that you want to group with such countries
With India being another heavyweight around, China will not be able to bully/influence the forum. Otherwise China had relished being the only big country in RCEP sans India. Thanks to good relations with ASEAN countries, now India's trading scope has widened.
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Its not India's foreign policy that is working for India but china's aggressiveness against asean nations in respect to border issues do. India must utilize it to the fullest. Get a hard grip over ASEAN even though if it bears near term loss. Because Japan, south Korea and ASEAN friendship possess an ultimate benefits for India in longer term.
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just shows how china tries to block india . even at un china is using its veto to hold india out
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Shailesh Shah (India)
China controls and blocks a lot of necessary items for many countries. It has aggressively prevented India's entry as a permanent member of the security council. Somehow our lifeless politicians and GOI continue claim negotiations are in progress for all the bullying! When are they going to learn?
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COLRANBIRLAMBA lamba (PTA)
victory for india
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Romi (singapore) replies to COLRANBIRLAMBA lamba
not on its own but with support of asean so how can u term as india victory ??
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China's hegemonic intention with the use or threat of use of force to become an Asian USA can only be controlled by Asian countries in their own interest. The USA ultimately may go with China to guard its economic interests. So only us Asians must unite and bring China to its sense. If China sincerely cooperates in good faith with other Asian countries for mutual benefits, 21 century will be ours.
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pankajgupta0707 (Location) replies to Thirugnanm
Asean countries and India also benefit by close proximity to each other. India is a vast market and ASEAN countries need such an emerging market to be a close trading partner.
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VERY EFFECTIVE MOVE AND IF CHINA CROSSES ITS LIMIT THEN ALL THE AFFECTED SOUTH ASIAN COUNTRIES SHOULD THINK OF BANNING ALL THE IMPORTS FROM THE CHINA SO THAT TO MAKE IT TO THINK TWICE TO DO ANY BLUNDER.
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rsim Simpson (Indian)
China is becoming the stinking foot sore!
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India Debate Forum (New Delhi)
Multilateral trade bodies are important and India's look east policy should bear fruit in a changing world order. Participation in trade blocs go beyond mere commerce. It has strategic bearing because it helps in confidence building. This is the strategy that China has been pursuing for long years with wonderful results. There is nothing no better tonic to strategic ties than a healthy trade relationship. Therefore, this is a good development for India.
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Pallavi (Port Louis)
Such trading blocs have not served any purpose for India other than getting the Indian market flooded with cheap imports and denting the Fiscal deficit further
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BC Menon (ALAPPUZHA)
Another lesson for India to study well about big neighbour and small neighbours. Though India surpassed China's oppn for our inclusion in RCEP, India need to care more for Asean Nations in future. We shall unite all Asia Pacific Nations against Chinese hegemony in this region.
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