Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran asserted that India does not believe that a conflict between the US and China is inevitable and that India was not part of any design to contain China as the economic stake between the two was large. While China had a huge trade surplus with the US (USD 250 billion to USD 25 billion), it also holds a large investment in US treasuries and essentially financing US debt. Further, unlike the Cold War standoff between the US and the Soviet Union , both countries have large stakes to continue their economic relationship.
Saran said that Indo-Sino trade stood at USD 18 billion and China is expected to be India ’s largest trading partner by 2010. While border issues exist and both countries are working to resolve them, Saran said that the continued dependence on fossil fuels will make India and China “scramble” to get control of limited oil and natural gas reserves. To further the oil cooperation framework and “avoid too much competition,” the two nations have had a moderate record of cooperation as in Sudan and Syria and other such ventures are being planned.