Bilateral trade between China and India witnessed continuous growth in the first nine months of 2021, and it is expected to expand further in the remainder of the year, despite souring ties caused by India's provocation on the border and restrictions on Chinese firms.
The solid trade data showed great potential for bilateral trade cooperation and offered a major blow to some Indian politicians, who are relentlessly promoting hostility toward China, instead of giving priority to economic growth and their people's livelihood, experts said.
China's General Administration of Customs said on Wednesday that bilateral trade in goods between China and India reached $90.38 billion in the first nine months, up 49.3 percent on a yearly basis. China's exports to India went up by 51.7 percent to $68.46 billion.
As India is gradually recovering from the COVID-19 induced mayhem of recent months, its demand for imports is rising, and China has been an indispensable trading partner in this regard, experts told the Global Times.
"The fresh trade data prove that the economy has its own rules, regardless of the pandemic's hit or geopolitical tensions. China and India have strong economic complementarity," Qian Feng, director of the research department at the National Strategy Institute at Tsinghua University, told the Global Times on Wednesday.
China regained its position as India's top trading partner in 2020 as India's reliance on imported machines, including optical, technical and medical apparatus, outweighed its efforts to decouple from China.
"There is still a huge potential for economic cooperation between the two countries," Qian said.
"The growing momentum of bilateral trade warns some Indian politicians, who often opt to play the China card as a way of diverting attention away from domestic woes. They now should see the facts more clearly and seek benefits for their people by focusing on economic development instead of cracking down on China," he noted.
Qian forecast that China-India trade ties will be further cemented in the remainder of the year despite lingering tension.
China's Foreign Ministry has urged India to stop taking any actions that complicate border issues, saying that India should stop taking actions that undermine mutual trust and bilateral relations, take concrete steps to maintain peace and stability in the China-India border area, and push bilateral relations back to the track of healthy and stable development.