India and China to resume defence exchanges

File picture of Indian and Chinese soldiers Defence ties have remained tentative between the two countries

India and China have agreed to resume defence exchanges which were halted last year after China refused a visa to a Kashmir-based general.

India had suspended the exchanges, saying that China had to be sensitive to its concerns over disputed Kashmir.

Defence ties have remained tentative due to long-standing disputes and a lack of trust between the countries.

The two countries have also agreed to work together to resolve their land border dispute.

The two nations fought a brief border war in 1962, but ties have improved.

Tensions remain, however, between the rising regional powers over their shared 3,500-km (2,170-mile) border, decades on from the conflict which China won.

Indian PM Manmohan Singh and Chinese President Hu Jintao have also pledged to strengthen economic ties during Mr Singh's visit to China to attend a summit that will include Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

"They also discussed further defence exchanges and visits," India's National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon told reporters.

The two countries have also agreed to boost economic ties.

China is India's largest trading partner. However, they still share a very unbalanced trade relationship.

In December, the two sides agreed to increase bilateral trade to $100bn (£66bn) by 2015, up from $60bn in 2010.

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