After Beijing's envoy offers to rename CPEC to allay India's fears, Chinese embassy expunges remark from speech

After the Chinese envoy to India offered to rename the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which passes through Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, apparently to allay India's concerns, Beijing has reportedly made a U-turn.

According to a report in India Todaythe Chinese Embassy has quietly deleted the paragraph from Luo Zhaohui's speech.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Luo, referring to the CPEC, which is part of One Belt One Road initiative, had said China has no intention to get involved in the sovereignty and territorial disputes between India and Pakistan and that the project is for promoting economic cooperation and connectivity in the region.

"It has no connections to or impact on sovereignty issues. Even we can think about renaming the CPEC. China and India have had successful experience of delinking sovereignty disputes from bilateral relations before," he said in closed-door address to a think-tank on Friday.

Luo's remarks were seen as Beijing's attempt to persuade India to participate in this week's Belt and Road summit. The summit is Beijing's attempts to showcase 'global acceptance' of what it calls is flagship economic project. India's participation in the project is important to Beijing as it constitutes 80 per cent of South Asia's economy. Beijing's official media has also urged India in a series of articles to join the ambition Chinese project to link China with Eurasia amid New Delhi's apparent silence over participation in this week's Belt and Road Forum summit.

At least 28 heads of state and government, including the prime ministers of Pakistan and Sri Lanka, have confirmed their participation in the summit Beijing is projecting as a global acceptance of the initiative.

However, India has been severely critical of the CPEC, saying the project violates its sovereignty as it runs through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. The Belt and Road includes a maze of roads and port projects. While the CPEC is highlighted as a "flagship project", the Belt and Road includes Bangladesh, China, India,  Myanmar (BCIM) Economic Corridor, New Eurasian Land Bridge, China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor, China-Indochina Peninsula Economic Corridor and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.

With inputs from PTI


Updated Date: May 09, 2017 11:30 AM

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