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The Present Relation Between China and India

  • Category: World
  • Subcategory: Asia
  • Topic: India
  • Pages: 5
  • Words: 2316
  • Published: 14 September 2018
  • Downloads: 43
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Issues Motivated for choosing the study

India begins one of the countries with a large number of populations and it is one of the top & fastest growing economies in the world. Talking about China how it is growing there is nothing hidden away from the global market and also at the same time they are facing certain issues with certain countries regarding the import and export market, that being said coming to the business side or relation of India and China share a lot of business and there are certain challenges the government of both the nations trying to improvise & also there is a lot of scope for the improvement in the working pattern between these 2 countries such as taxation, Payment methods, Free trade, Improvising on the main challenges. China is one of the countries which win in production & to certain extent we can say also a hulk in the manufacturing sector due to cheap raw material labor etc. To understand how India and China will be prospering in the future I have selected this particular topic as I feel there is a lot of scope and a lot of learning in this particular discussion.

Origin and Nature

India is the seventh largest country of the world. India accounts for about 2.4 percent of the total surface area of the world. India shores her 15,200 km land frontiers with Pakistan in the west and North West, Afghanistan in the North West, China, Nepal and Bhutan in the north, and Bangladesh and Myanmar in the east. India’s longest border is with Bangladesh while the shortest border in with Afghanistan.

The present relation between China and India has great uncertainty and ambiguity as both the countries have adopted a different attitude of methodology and way of sorting the differences to emerge as regional powers mainly due to the mutual suspicion and distrust rather due to the inheritance of issues. China and India, the two largest developing countries in the world, share a number of interests especially in the field of domestic development, and economic reform. They are experiencing a period of rapid economic growth. However, both the states are also struggling to define their role in the world given their new profound influence on the global economy. Both promote the notion of a multi-polar world in which they may serve as bigger players alongside the United States. China’s strategic interests in India follows from its desire to maintain a peaceful international environment create friendly relations with all the states and especially with neighbors, prevent any attempt towards the formation of anti-China blocs and finally develop new markets, investment opportunities and resources to stimulate its economic growth. It also wants to resolve its domestic problems in a coherent manner. To achieve all these objectives, it is necessary for China to have friendly relations with India, despite the inherited bilateral issues. On the other hand, India’s own focus on the internal development encourages it to cultivate positive relations with China.

Literature Review

According to Dr.Devare (Suresh, 2015), the relationship between India-China is very important because both countries have in recent years successfully attempted to reignite diplomatic and economic ties and have moderately succeeded. Adding to that, according to Ahmad (Ahmad, 2014), the present relation between countries still has great uncertainty and different methods of dealing with situations. One similarity between the two nations, as suggested by Andrew Small in his novel “The China-Pakistan Axis,” is that both nations have conflicting relations with Pakistan (Menon, 2018). While the India-China conflict dates back a long time, 2017 has been a trying year for both the nations due to increasing competition and growing strategic mistrust (Ivan Lidarev, 2018). The India-China relationship will be very beneficial to both the states, if successful, and will help quiet down the noises of the West, which is growing fearful of the very phenomenon it used to push as a panacea for all evils. Such an alliance can also effectively defend the interests of the developing world on issues like climate change and WTO negotiations. (Leslie Keerthi Kumar SM, 2018).

Current Situation

The main problem between the two countries is the Border question, which is a historical one. The Border issue is rooted in the disputed status of the McMahon Line, which defines the border between India and Tibet. India recognizes this agreement as the basis for its territorial claim while China objected the validity of McMahon Line which was drawn in 1914 Simla convention because China believes that it was not a party to Simla Convention so it is not bound to accept the boundary demarcated by Simla convention. There has not been a remarkable progress in resolving the border dispute between the two sides due to the importance of Aksai Chin to China because it is the main link between Tibet and Xinjiang province of China and Arunachal Pradesh to India is crucial to stability in India’s north-eastern insurgent affected areas. The situation went downhill in such a way that in May 2007, the Chinese government denied a visa to an Indian official to visit China on the grounds that he was from Arunachal Pradesh which considers its own territory. In addition, there have been continued media reports of the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA’s) encroachments across the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

This recent increasing aggressive policy over the disputed borders has led to a rapid melt down in Sino-India border talks and a ‘mini-cold war’ on the border issue was prominently visible. Again in March, 2009 China attempted to block a $ 2.9 billion loan to India from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) on the grounds that it was destined for development of Arunachal Pradesh. Continuing the claim on Arunachal Pradesh, in June, 2007 Chinese Foreign Minister again insisted that the presence of Indians would not stop China from claiming Arunachal Pradesh. On the other side, India regards Arunachal Pradesh as an integral part of Indian Union which merged with Indian Union in 1987 constitutionally and in accordance with the consent of the people of Arunachal Pradesh. Therefore, India is firm on its stand on Arunachal Pradesh and it is unlikely that India will toe to China’s line on this issue. Thus, the border issue between China and India is one of the delicate issues and needs immediate resolution so that some long lasting peace can be brought in this part of the world. 2017 was an extremely difficult year for China-India relations. With military tensions close to their disputed border, increasing competition in their neighborhood, and growing strategic mistrust, Beijing and New Delhi’s relations reached a nadir in 2017.

The past year witnessed several episodes that seriously damaged China-India relations and put them on a downward trajectory. Several of these were serious but rather routine, such as the tensions around the Dalai Lama’s visit to the disputed state of Arunachal Pradesh and China’s continued blocking of the bid to design Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist. However, these were minor compared with three episodes that shook bilateral relations and had serious strategic consequences. These include:

The Doklam military standoff, a two-and-a-half-month test of wills prompted by China’s construction of a road in territory it disputes with Bhutan, not far from a strategically key section of the China-India border. What made the Doklam standoff particularly intensely was its linkage to two important issues. One is the China-India competition for influence in Bhutan, which reflects the wider competition for influence in South Asia prompted by China’s growing power in the region and India’s desire to protect what it sees as its own sphere of interest. The other is the unresolved and increasingly unstable China-India territorial dispute, which has seen growing militarization in recent years, and a destabilizing competition to build infrastructure around the de facto border.

India’s decision to boycott the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) Summit held in Beijing in May, which even Chinese adversaries such as Japan and the United States attended, was another major blow to China-India relations. To China, the boycott was not only a signal of India’s hostility to its most important international project, but also an affront both to Beijing’s self-image as an international leader and, personally, to the BRI’s champion, President Xi Jinping. The most important immediate reason for the unprecedented snub was the fact that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, the crucial Pakistan leg of the BRI, includes projects in Pakistan-held Kashmir, which India claims, thus legitimizing Pakistan’s position on the issue and establishing facts on the ground.

The last event that quietly damaged China-India relations in 2017 was India’s decision in November to join the revived Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad), a strategic dialogue between the United States, Japan, India, and Australia with a naval component. Beijing has opposed the Quad as a potential anti-Chinese alliance of democracies aimed at containing it and checking its maritime rise in the Indo-Pacific; that opposition played a major role in the dialogue’s earlier abandonment. India’s decision to join the resurrected but still somewhat amorphous Quad inevitably reflects its worries about China’s growing power and assertiveness, particularly in the Indian Ocean, and Delhi’s readiness to hedge against them. Thus, the Quad decision feeds into Beijing’s growing, albeit somewhat exaggerated, fear that India would join the United States and Japan in containing Beijing, a suspicion which has long silently poisoned China-India relations. For the future, many strategic thinkers are arguing that disputes relating to water will be a major source of conflict between the two countries. China’s plan of constructing big dams and diverting the water of rivers to its own advantage has discontented in India. As there are four rivers that flow from China to India, the two countries must have a better understanding relating to water sharing and other attending benefits out of these rivers. However, China’s strategic advantage over these rivers makes it possible for her to counter-balance India on many other issues.

Lessons Learned

China and India are finding it very difficult to manage their tensions and disagreements, as evidenced by the Doklam standoff and India’s boycott of the BRI summit, a signal that the present format of the relationship is not working. All this indicates that the China-India relationship is increasingly standing at a crossroads and the two sides will have to choose in what direction they will go, or, if they don’t, accept the road that inertia would choose for them.

Second, the Sino-Indian relationship is progressively deteriorating. As China has increased its presence around India and has begun to vigorously shape Asia’s strategic landscape to its advantage, India has adopted a much tougher and more decisive stance toward Beijing. The three episodes above clearly outline these dynamics. While this picture has been developing for a long time, it has emerged much more forcefully in recent years, as the rise of both powers has accelerated, Beijing’s influence in South Asia has increased and China has begun to establish the foundations of a new Asian order promoted through the BRI.

India’s tumultuous past with China should not preclude future possibilities and there should not be a rush to side with the United States or any other nation just because it turned out to be the right answer to a previous foreign policy question that India got wrong. This is a different question and these are different times.

Recommendations for the Future

India needs to have a clear approach going forward in order to avoid being overwhelmed by forces beyond its control. While it is too early to choose sides or affirm another non-aligned doctrine, it is also unwise to merely keep reacting to events instead of being proactive. There has to be a vigorous debate about the best course to pursue in the short, medium, and long term.

Strategic thinking should avoid being captive to history and be ready to cast aside past animosities if present interests are better served by turning a new page. India is understandably still traumatized by the humiliating defeat in the 1962 war and this clouds its view of China. However, sometimes reimagining relationships in light of new realities is important. Indian policymakers should at the least consider reimagining Indo-China relationship before jumping to the opposite side.

One of the consequences of the 1962 war and the continuing failure of Indian diplomacy is the way Pakistan manages to gain political as well as military favors from China. A strong Indo-China relationship will also counter the de-globalizing noises emerging from a tired West, which is growing fearful of the very phenomenon it used to push as a panacea for all evils. Such an alliance can also effectively defend the interests of the developing world on issues like climate change and WTO negotiations. The economic benefits of a closer alliance with China hardly need to be stated. Geographic proximity, as well as the sheer size of the two markets, underline the immense untapped economic potential. Thus, a mutually beneficial Indo-China partnership is imaginable and is possible. Such an alliance also has the potential to secure peace and prosperity for all of Asia.

In short, China and India need to choose the future course of their relationship, and it is increasingly likely that ties would go in the wrong direction. The costs and risks of such a turn of events would be formidable, as would the missed opportunities for cooperation, trade, and investment between Asia’s two giants. To avoid such an outcome, both sides need to rethink their policy vis-à-vis each other and reshape their relationship.

References:

1. Ahmad, S. (2014). Major Bilateral Issues between China and India. Arts And Social Sciences Journal, 05(01).

2. Ivan Lidarev, T. (2018). 2017: A Tough Year for China-India Relations. The Diplomat. Retrieved 22 January 2018, 

3. Leslie Keerthi Kumar SM, T. (2018). India's Choice: China or the United States. The Diplomat. Retrieved 22 January 2018,

4. Menon, S. (2018). As China's Pakistan Ties Deepen, India Needs a Strategy to Mitigate the Fallout – The Wire. The Wire. Retrieved 22 January 2018

5. Suresh, D. (2015). Geo-Political Disputes between India- China. SSRN Electronic Journal.

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