Will the Minister of EXTERNAL AFFAIRS be pleased to state:
(a) whether the China has entered the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) with observer status;
(b) if so, the details thereof;
(c) whether the India resisted such a move in the 17th SAARC Summit;
(d) if not, the reasons therefor;
(e) whether any study has been commissioned on the impact of Chinese entry with observer status on India’s influence on the region; and
(f) if so, the details thereof?
ANSWER THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS (SMT. PRENEET KAUR)
(b) China has been an Observer in SAARC since the Association opened itself to Observers. Since the XIV Summit in New Delhi in 2007, Observers may attend opening and closing ceremonies of each SAARC Summit. They may also propose cooperative projects in areas agreed to by all eight SAARC member states.
(c) & (d) Since China is already an observer at SAARC, the question of India resisting such a move at the XVII Summit did not arise.
(f) Does not arise.