Daily Current Affairs – 17th November, 2016Devendra Vishwakarma
India-China and the Changing World Order
Evolution of the world order
- The control of nations on the global geopolitics has shifted hands from Asian powers till the late 18thCentury to the Western nations such as United Kingdom and United States of America.
- The late 19th century and the 20th century have witnessed the Western powers using imperialism and colonialism to dictate trade and even production and consumption.
- The contemporary events now hint at history repeating itself and the power returning in the hands of the Asian powers once again.
Changes that have occurred
- The relative decline of the U.S. that has occurred both economically and strategically. However, focus is also needed on Asia’s re-emergence.
- Declining supremacy and might of the global institutions such as World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Trade Organisation (WTO) and emergence of institutions such as BRICS Bank and Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank.
- Increase in the limits to trade liberalisation in the West also.
- Containment, as adopted during the Cold War, is not effective in Asia since China is emerging as the largest global economy and has no close competition.
- Alliances, as formed during the World War, are also losing significance in Asia as economic influence is attaining greater importance than military influence.
- Emergence of the New U.S. President Elect, Donald Trump who intends to focus on “America First” approach with focus on resetting ties with Russia and build a very strong relationship with China based with focus on trade.
- Emergence of Right wing leaders across various nations.
- Exit of the UK from European Union.
- Annexation of Crimea by Russia and its impact on the power equation between USA and Russia.
Emergence of Asia
- Asia will be restored as the economic centre of global politics
- Asia will also be the main centre of commercial transactions and trade rules will be limited to standardisation and dispute settlement only unlike the prevailing trade regime under the WTO framework.
India and China – Common Values
China and India have had much in common in terms of physiography and strategic ideology.
- Both countries have major snow fed rivers as boundaries.
- Strategically, both the nations have not been believers of conquering nations outside their territories of influence.
- Contrary to western belief, both these nations focus on building partnerships based on common values.
- In terms of political ideology as well, both China and India give due importance to secularism, human rights and welfare of all.
- They have had a common agenda at the United Nations (UN) as well. Both the nations have not been favouring the international relations based on the global strategy of shared natural resources, technology and prosperity.
- The great positive of the India-China relationship in the recent years has been the increased business-to-business and people-to-people contacts between citizens of the two countries.
Scope of Cooperation
- China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative is an opportunity for both nations to collaborate and take a lead in connectivity-led trade in Eurasia.
- Both the nations should give recognition to each other’s special interests in the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean and enhance the strategic advantage from it.
- There is a need to come to a mutual understanding on the issues of membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), global terrorism, and China’s role in Gwadar.
- China has also suggested a free trade agreement and both countries aspire towards creating an ‘Asian Century’.
- India’s advantage in terms of knowledge industry complements those of China in infrastructure and investment.
- China is the world’s largest producer of goods and India is the largest producer of services. India will have an advantage in this since the future growth in Asia will be service sector oriented.
- India has the potential to be the world leader in terms new knowledge-based order through its pharmaceutical sector, information technology and crop varieties.
- It is the only country with both extensive endemic biodiversity and world-class endogenous biotechnology industry.
- India is also developing low cost and indigenous solutions for urbanisation, governance, health and education problems.
- Institutional and professional interaction must also increase.
- India can do more to facilitate the travel of Chinese to India to enhance the people to people ties further.