February 13, 2008
Written by C.N.
As India and China continue to emerge as international superpowers, it is almost inevitable that they will see each other as rivals for global resources and influence. However, many people may not know that tension and even hostility between these two countries have existed long before their recent economic expansion.
As Time magazine reports, both countries have claimed a disputed part of their border with each other since 1962 and India has accused China of simultaneously arming its other major rival Pakistan with nuclear weapons while trying to block India’s acquisition of the same weapons. For its part, China is not happy with India’s increasingly close military relations with the U.S.
Nonetheless, recent meetings between each country’s leaders may be paving the way for improved relations between the two countries:
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh left Beijing with 11 memorandums signed and a renewed spirit of goodwill forged between the two titans of Asia. “We are at an exciting point in history when the center of gravity of the world economy is moving towards Asia,” Singh [said]. The agreement of principles adopted by the two sides was titled “A Shared Vision for the 21st Century.” . . .
What brings both sides together, however, as it has done for generations, is commerce. The previous round of Sino-Indian talks in New Delhi last year set a goal of boosting bilateral trade to $40 billion by 2010 — that figure is likely to be eclipsed two years ahead of schedule, and was pumped up after this week’s meetings to $60 billion. Business leaders on both sides are pressing for further measures to integrate their booming economies.
The article takes pains to describe the many obstacles that still exist between India and China before genuine and close cooperation can occur. Nonetheless, I would agree with those who say that the future is likely to bring warmer, rather than colder, relations between Asia’s emerging superpowers.
Also, while I could be wrong, I’m guessing that this prospect of closer cooperation and relations between India and China is not something the U.S. wanted to hear . . .
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Suggested reference: Le, C.N. . "China and India Trying to Make Nice" Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America. <http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2008/02/china-and-india-trying-to-make-nice/> ().
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