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 India - the Real Competition?

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PostSubject: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyTue Apr 08, 2008 1:40 pm

In the past few years China has become widely recognised as the biggest competitor to the West, I decline to say rival. They have made their presence known by increasingly crossing Japan (who you'd swear had been allies during the war the way America treats them), taking a more active interest in World affairs and becoming a major presence in Africa.

This report in the BBC set a new light on the whole debate: India pledges African investment. India sometimes gets a mention alongside China as one of these emerging powers. Occasionally someone calls for them to be given more of a role on the UN security council. But they deserve to be considered in their own right.

India has much better links to the West, especially Britain, where the bulk of global power still lies. As the report points out, they have strong links to Africa, much stronger than China. And their population may well overtake that of China in the coming years. They don't have the overtly communist taint of China, and don't have the likes of Burma, Taiwan and North Korea hanging around their necks (though in fairness they are as much a presence in Burma as China, they just aren't as widely recognised as such).

Many years ago Samuel Huntington, in his book The Clash Of Civilizations (a follow-up to his widely read and controversial essay of roughly the same name) provided a scenario where China and the US eventually come to blows over Taiwan and I think Japan. In all the conflict the West is vanquished as a global power and China is greatly weakened, leaving a vacuum for India to fill.

Now this is all fiction (and Huntington is not popular nowadays) but if ever a country had to take on the West, or America a least, it's China. India knows what oppertunity's this would leave for them.
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyTue Apr 08, 2008 1:49 pm

If you are interested in the rise of India there was several articles in the Economist of about one month ago on the issue. I believe they are available without charge on the Economist website.

Their view was India has lots of potential but is seriously stagnating.
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyTue Apr 08, 2008 3:51 pm

I
India - the Real Competition? Percen11
Full graph

Apologies for the size of this graph, but it is after all covering 500 years of global economic history.

It is interesting to see how important India and China were in world scales until the 19th century, when the rise of British industrialism colonialism, supported by dominant naval power, followed by the development of the US as an industrial and world power in the 20th century, greatly exceeded those two great historic productive and trading areas.

The US rose through oil, manufacturing and gun boats and permanent military bases to back up their interests globally.

The US is anything but ready to step back now, but in global terms is a relatively small oil producer (see the oil thread). Former industrial power house regions of the US are now referred to as "rust bucket" areas and the US is operating on credit from its competitors.

India is projected to become the most populous state in the world with I think 1.25 billion or thereabouts in the next 20 years. They are steaming ahead with technology and "4th level" development. On the down side, sea level change could be disastrous to the sub continent and it is hard to know what to expect or when to expect it.

Looking at the graph, I would be eyeing up Latin America as the next big thing - again unless the melting Andes wreck their food supply: then all bets are off.
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyTue Apr 08, 2008 3:55 pm

Cactus Flower

A link to that graph might be more useful, we're missing half of it. Huntington, in his book, also had Latin America as one of the beneficiaries of a Sino-American war.
Here's a link: http://www.visualizingeconomics.com/category/region/world/


Last edited by 905 on Tue Apr 08, 2008 4:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyTue Apr 08, 2008 3:59 pm

905 wrote:
Cactus Flower

A link to that graph might be more useful, we're missing half of it. Huntington, in his book, also had Latin America as one of the beneficiaries of a Sino-American war.

Sorry 905 - but if you scroll about you can see all of it. Will fix it up tonight.
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyThu Apr 10, 2008 8:47 pm

India is certainly an up and coming World player but it is not level with China yet.

TBH I think a War (or maybe a 'Cold War') is much more likely between China and India than betwen China and Taiwan.

IMO the US would not go to war over a Chinese attack on Taiwan. On the other hand an attack on that island is most unlikley anyway.

India's biggest strategic worry is the stability or lack of it of it's populous Muslim neighbours Pakistan and Bangladesh - if they implode India will be sucked in ...


Last edited by Brandubh on Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyThu Apr 10, 2008 8:53 pm

Good point Brandubh, I think India and China have a border dispute. There's more for China and the US to fall out over than Taiwan, Japan and South Korea spring to mind. It wouldn't take anything overtly military, but a bullying campaign by the Chinese to force the Japs into some dodgy trade agreement, that sort of thing.

I'm nnot sure but I think India's Muslim population is one of those ageing ones which makes strife less likely. I suspect it's the same with Pakistan and Bangladesh (I may be altogether wrong).
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyThu Apr 10, 2008 8:59 pm

Tibet might possibly become a bone of contention if things take off there.

The Dalai Lama might be seen by the Chinese as someone given far too much freedom by India to stir things up.

India and China fought a brief but intense border war in 1962 which the Chinese won hands down BTW.
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PostSubject: Re: India - the Real Competition?   India - the Real Competition? EmptyThu Apr 10, 2008 9:08 pm

I thought Tibet was becoming less of a flash-point over the years. A lot of Tibetans are settling for what they have and the Dalai Lama is making peaceful noises. All the recent upset is down to the Olympics and a chance to stir things up.

Of course, if China wanted a war, they could probably use Tibet somehow. But I don't see any sign of this.

Didn't know about the war. Well done to the Indians, they should thank us for all that colonialism!
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