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Talks with China smooth, India will never bow down: Rajnath Singh

Updated on: 29 April,2024 07:45 AM IST  |  Ahmedabad
Agencies |

Defence minister assures of unwavering stance amid talks, highlights surge in defence exports

Talks with China smooth, India will never bow down: Rajnath Singh

PM Modi with President Xi Jinping. File pic/X; (right) Rajnath Singh

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Talks with China smooth, India will never bow down: Rajnath Singh

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said talks between India and China are going smoothly and India will never bow down.

Singh, who is in Ahmedabad to campaign for BJP candidates contesting the polls, said India has become a powerful country from a military standpoint and wants to maintain good relations with its neighbours.

“India is no longer a weak India. India has also become a powerful country from a military point of view. We want to maintain good relations with our neighbours,” he said when asked about Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s accusation against the Narendra Modi government over Chinese aggression.

Talks between India and China are going on smoothly and in a good environment over whatever issues there are, he said.

“I understand that we should wait for the outcome of the talks. But I want to assure the countrymen that India has not bowed down anywhere, nor will it ever bow down,” he said.

Singh also expressed confidence that India’s defence exports, which crossed the R21,000 crore mark in the financial 2023-24, will increase going forward.

“In 2014, we exported R600 crore defence items, but now the figure has crossed R21,000 crore, and I can say that it is going to increase,” he said.

The minister said the Modi government is committed to ensuring that defence items, whether missiles and other weapons, bombs or tanks, should be made in India and by Indians.

Rs 600cr
Amount of defence items exported in 2014

India’s rising reliance on Chinese imports a concern

With increasing India’s dependence on Chinese industrial goods, Beijing’s share in New Delhi’s imports of such goods rose to 30 per cent from 21 per cent in the last 15 years, a report said.

According to the report by Global Trade Research Initiative, growing trade deficit with China is a cause of concern, and strategic implications of this dependency are profound, affecting not only economic but also national security dimensions. From 2019 to 2024, India’s exports to China have stagnated at around USD 16 billion annually, while imports from China have surged from USD 70.3 billion in 2018-19 to over USD 101 billion in 2023-24, resulting in a cumulative trade deficit exceeding USD 387 billion over five years.

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