Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping will be holding a one-on-one meet ahead of the 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit in the coastal city of Qingdao in Eastern China this weekend.
The city of Qingdoa that is most famous for its Tsingtao Beer is also where Jinping will be hosting 10 countries. The 10-member group will be holding SCO meet to resolve contentious issues in the lively city.
This is the first time for India and Pakistan as full members of SCO, as they were elected in the last year’s summit in Astana, Kazakhstan.
It’s always has been difficult for India to be part of the group where China and Russia are main powers but this will also allow India to access Central Asia oil rich markets, something India has been eyeing for over 20 years.
After the successful ‘informal summit’ between PM Modi and President Jinping in Wuhan in April, this will be the second time both leaders are meeting in last couple of months. This would allow them to build more on the Wuhan commitments.
It’s been a long time since 72-days Dokhlam stand-off last year and both countries have tried to ease each other’s nerves.
In Qingdoa, India will get a chance to balance its relations with Russia, in the wake of America’s pressure to back off from buying Russian made S-400 air defence system.
It is also the first time major world leaders are meeting after U.S. pulled out of Iran Nuclear deal. Where Russia has been trying to get Iran as a SCO member, India will now take the seat as an observer.
It is also speculated that China is trying to be nice to neighbors like India and Japan with whom it has contentious relations, with the scale of developments in North Korea. But China has been blindsided as Trump, Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae In have tried to diffuse the tension on Korean peninsula.