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China to maintain friendly relations with neighboring countries amid defense budget increase

03-04-2011 12:47 BJT Special Report:2011 NPC & CPPCC Sessions |

BEIJING, March 4 (Xinhua) -- China is willing to maintain friendly relations with neighboring countries such as India in spite of the increase of its defense spending, a Chinese spokesman said Friday.

China and India have reached a consensus on maintaining peace and tranquility of their border areas before border issues are eventually settled, said Li Zhaoxing, spokesman for the annual session of China's national legislature.

China is ready to work with India to implement relevant agreements to maintain a stable situation in border areas, which is conducive to the interests of the two countries, he said.

"It is true that China's defense budget is raised a bit, but the ratio of the defense spending in the country's GDP remains very low, much lower than those of many other countries," Li told a press conference for the annual parliamentary session.

However, the ratio in India is far higher than two percent, he said when responding to a question on whether China's defense budget increase would put pressure on its neighboring countries such as India.

According to the spokesman, China plans to raise its defense budget by 12.7 percent to 601 billion yuan (91.5 billion U.S. dollars) in 2011, compared with an increase of 7.5 percent last year.

Editor:Yang Jie |Source: Xinhua

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