Thursday, January 27, 2011

South Asia also needs to overheat economically even if it brings inflation….


A leading British newspaper, in a recent analysis, has concluded that China is growing at a pace much faster than estimated. The paper screams that China is overheating. This will lead it to attain the status of number one economy of the world in the next ten to fifteen years, but this has some associated disadvantages like price hike and inflation. It is already a military power and has all those pre-requisites which make it a potential super power. China will alter the course of history and disturb the world order by becoming a potent challenge to the uni-polar order of the world. And China is treading the path to its destination very cautiously. It has border disputes with India, who has open support of the USA to contain expanding sphere of influence of China in the Indian ocean. Effectively, it is facing military threat from this neighbor. But China, in spite of its military superiority has put all its disputes on the back burner and is actively pursuing growth of its trade with India. This is key to China’s economic growth and very essential for it to reach its destination.
On the other hand, Pakistan despite its fragile economy has been forced by India to enter an arms race in order to further bleed economically. War on Terror is another front where Pakistan has to make economic sacrifices without any reward. In this situation, it is essential that Pakistan has peaceful borders both on its East and West and pursue the resolution of its disputes. India which was not ready to talk seems to have shifted its stance and has expressed its resolve to put some of its differences with Pakistan on the back burner for a while to focus on development challenges and change the adversarial mindset so that all issues pending between them could be discussed. According to media reports, India’s External affairs minister SM Krishna on Wednesday said terrorism of the 26/11-variety had inflicted substantial damage to India-Pakistan relations and set the clock back for the dialogue process initiated in 2004.
"India and Pakistan have to put some of their differences on the back burner and concentrate on addressing the development challenges facing the two nations. For that, trust is needed and we have to put in place mechanisms to build trust," he said in his hour-long meeting with a group of 13 visiting senior Pakistani journalists from newspapers, news channels and magazines.
"Let me make it abundantly clear...India desires peaceful and friendly relations with Pakistan. This will enable both the countries to effectively address development challenges we face. For that, the basic need is that our mindset, which is often adversarial, has to be changed," he said.
"We need to look at things in a positive manner. Our relationship has so many potentials, only if we come out of that mindset. Let me assure you, India has come out of it," he added.
Krishna, however, noted that India was not shying away from discussing any issues between the neighbors and that can happen only if the trust deficit, which was the biggest impediment, was reduced.
On the other hand, Pakistan and Afghanistan are likely to propose to the US to halt combat operations in the war-torn country and allow the reconciliation process to take the lead in the latest push for peace with the Taliban.
But the idea is likely to pitch the two countries against Washington, which seeks to go hard against the insurgents before the coalition forces begin pulling out from Afghanistan. As Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmay Rassoul arrives in Islamabad today (Thursday), the two countries have decided to put up a joint front at next month’s trilateral meeting with the US. If the three countries of South Asia have decided to positively address their issues and create an atmosphere of trust, all of them will be direct beneficiaries of this move. Like China, South Asia also has to overheat but this time in economic sense, and overheat it must come what may even if it is inflation. Ultimately, this will bring good news for the people of the region.

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