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Is India trying to convince the world China’s OBOR plan is secretly colonial?

Updated May 16, 2017 11:07am

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More than 29 heads of nations came together in Beijing on Sunday to officially launch China’s massive One Belt One Road initiative, an effort that some have described as the biggest overseas development push in history. But despite the enormity of the project, which will include investments estimated at $900 billion to develop new land and maritime trade routes between China and Europe, Beijing’s most populous neighbour was conspicuous by its absence.

Explaining its decision to stay away, the Indian government released a statement saying it is concerned about China’s attitude towards territorial sovereignty and financial responsibility.

“We are of firm belief that connectivity initiatives must be based on universally recognised international norms, good governance, rule of law, openness, transparency and equality... Connectivity projects must be pursued in a manner that respects sovereignty and territorial integrity.

...Guided by our principled position in the matter, we have been urging China to engage in a meaningful dialogue on its connectivity initiative, ‘One Belt, One Road’ which was later renamed as ‘Belt and Road Initiative’. We are awaiting a positive response from the Chinese side.” — Ministry of External Affairs

The Times of India condensed this to a simple phrase that would easily resonate with Indians, saying New Delhi’s strongly worded statement suggested that the Belt and Road project “is little more than a colonial enterprise, leaving debt and broken communities in its wake”.

China-Pakistan corridor

India’s statement is generally being read as a direct response to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a $62 billion package of infrastructure projects considered one of the flagship parts of the Belt and Road initiative.

The CPEC connects China’s western Xinjiang province with Gwadar port, while also giving Pakistan access to other Central Asian nations. But a significant portion of the corridor runs through what New Delhi calls Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

This has constantly caused heartburn in relations between New Delhi and Beijing. Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a reference to the CPEC at the Raisina Dialogue in January, saying “only by respecting the sovereignty of countries involved, can regional connectivity corridors fulfill their promise and avoid differences and discord.”

Saturday’s statement from the Ministry of External Affairs about the Belt and Road Initiative reiterated this.

“Regarding the so-called ‘China-Pakistan Economic Corridor’, which is being projected as the flagship project of the BRI/OBOR, the international community is well aware of India’s position. No country can accept a project that ignores its core concerns on sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

Colonial China

While the references to CPEC and sovereignty are to be expected, Saturday’s statement included objections that go beyond questions of territory.

“Connectivity initiatives must follow principles of financial responsibility to avoid projects that would create unsustainable debt burden for communities; balanced ecological and environmental protection and preservation standards; transparent assessment of project costs; and skill and technology transfer to help long term running and maintenance of the assets created by local communities.”

India has always insisted on referring to OBOR as a “unilateral” or “national” project of China’s rather than a regional, multilateral one. Indian Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said in 2015 that OBOR is a “national initiative devised with national interests,” and that if China wanted India to buy into it, they would “need to have larger discussions and those haven’t happened.”

References to financial responsibility, environmental protection, transparency and technology transfer now expand on this idea with a more specific critique.

With the CPEC, India wanted China to know that it is miffed about the initiative intruding on disputed territory. With the new references, it seems like it is trying to convince countries that are party to OBOR that getting close to China might be a bad idea.

Debt diplomacy

This is not new. Analysts have for some time warned that Beijing’s massive initiative is essentially aimed at helping China transition from a manufacturing nation into a consumer economy, get rid of excess capacity, reduce the disparity between its western and eastern provinces and, most importantly, project Chinese geostrategic power throughout the neighbourhood and beyond.

Foreign policy analyst Brahma Chellaney called the OBOR China’s “debt-trap diplomacy”, arguing that it intentionally puts partner countries in debt to increase Beijing’s leverage.

Ratings agency Fitch warned in a report earlier this year that OBOR does not address the most pressing infrastructure needs of partner countries and could easily result in unviable projects and smaller nations saddled with large debts.

There have already been examples of this. In Sri Lanka, China helped build a large port and airport near Hambantota but with little economic activity emerging from either project, the loans are mounting and that debt is turning into equity, giving Beijing more control over key assets on the island country. Analysts in Cambodia have raised red flags suggesting the same thing might happen there.

Seema Sirohi, writing in the Economic Times, goes further, calling OBOR “not globalisation 2.0 but dominance 3.0”. New Delhi now appears to be taking this line too.

Too little too late

Yet it is important to also note that almost every large country in the world, apart from India, was already at the table in Beijing. Even the United States of America, which initially planned to snub Beijing, sent representatives after China said it would open its market to American beef. The same applied to India’s neighbourhood. Every one of India’s neighbours, barring Bhutan, had a delegation at the Belt and Road Forum.

Never mind questions about what India’s own connectivity efforts have amounted to, whether it is the Spice Route or Project Mausam, the Indian Ocean-focused SAGAR or New Delhi’s inability to keep even Bhutan in a road project connecting the neighbourhood.

The last-minute statement from MEA suggests negotiations for India to turn up at the Belt and Road Forum failed, as have most other attempts to connect with Beijing recently – whether it is keeping India out of the Nuclear Suppliers Group or in preventing Masood Azhar from being declared a global terrorist.

India might be attempting a face-saver in bringing up questions of finances and transparency with OBOR, but it is unlikely to convince anyone beyond a domestic audience, at least for the moment.

But MEA seems to have finally made its position on OBOR clear. What will snubbing China, India’s largest trading partner, mean for events in a region that is already tense?


This article was first published on Scroll and has been reproduced with permission.

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Rohan is the News Editor at Scroll.in.


The views expressed by this writer and commenters below do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.



Comments (146) Closed



SP May 16, 2017 10:14am

No worries about CPEC. Suck it and see it.

kHEM May 16, 2017 10:25am

India has become an economic power by hard work & dedication for successive governments and its people. We don't want to be part of a project where sovereignty has to be surrendered for few economic gains. India is well place at the moment and not needed to worry about China.

Akil Akhtar May 16, 2017 10:32am

India is a country that worries more about what others have and then works on stopping or sabotaging it...especially in case of Pakistan.

mandy May 16, 2017 10:32am

India has realized it and others will realize it soon!!!

Mumbai man May 16, 2017 10:37am

India is doing some plain speaking for a while, everyone can judge it in a manner that they can.

Global citizen May 16, 2017 10:40am

USA did same thing to european nations during world war by giving billions of dollar in aids and loans. This money was used to buy weapons and machineries from USA to build their own infrastructure. American companies sold their machineries to european nations boosting their own economy. China is doing the same here.

Naveen Chauhan May 16, 2017 10:48am

Yes, This is exactly what India want to warn the world. If you are taking more money, what you can pay back is definitely making you pray to a country who believes in ancient theory of expansion...

Clean May 16, 2017 10:54am

You should read a book - "The company that changed the world". I am sure you will change your opinion..

PSC May 16, 2017 10:55am

Nothing better expected from Scroll.in journalists, copy+pasting from other sources. If there's a trade deficit in participating countries, if China sells all but buys next to nothing from them, its economic capitalization. Surprised why Pak citizens can't see that China will get land and control for all economic activities under CPEC and Pakistan will foot the bill in terms of hefty loan, same way Sri Lanka and few other countries has realized. India has nothing much to lose by not joining OBOR, CPEC etc and it will be good if we can bring down trade deficit with China in coming days.

Desi Dimag May 16, 2017 10:56am

Never underestimate the intellect of Indian think tanks.

Lohpurush May 16, 2017 10:58am

China has to invest it's burgeoning forex to good use. Chinese cos will get business from road construction in OROB. Chinese govt will get interest on loans to different countries.

Udayan Mitra May 16, 2017 11:02am

I don't think India is trying to convince the world of anything in respect of China's OBOR initiative. India simply does not believe borrowing at double digit rates (mid-teen type cost of debt) is economically viable in the realm of project finance because the required rate of equity return would be substantially north of 25%, which is highly unlikely to be realized. What's more, as a BBB rated credit, India can simply borrow at USD Libor plus 350-400 basis points making all in debt costs about 7.5%-8.0% over a 10-30 year term. As with anything else, tapping the global capital markets is more efficient than borrowing from the Chinese government, unless a country's poor credit ratings prevent access to private sector financing.

SM May 16, 2017 11:04am

Even a casual glance at the CPEC plan published in this very publication shows the Chinese intention very clearly. Reading it as a economically subjugated colony creation exercise is a very logical conclusion.

Irfan May 16, 2017 11:05am

Without India having the 2nd biggest population , OBOR is not impressive and not even good for China.

VijU May 16, 2017 11:05am

Note that Indian brains dominate and lead entire world in any sector & strategy. There must be something if this is been said.

ANIL SAHU May 16, 2017 11:06am

OBOR is all gas which lead to constipation in future.

NP May 16, 2017 11:15am

China, benefactor? "A message well I hear, but I lack the faith."

A shah May 16, 2017 11:15am

If China can't convince its giant neighbor and the worlds fastest growing economy. Then it doesn't stand a chance.

NITISH May 16, 2017 11:18am

@Akil Akhtar Oh yes, India and Pakistan's relations with its neighbours definitely suggest that.

Neutral May 16, 2017 11:18am

@Akhil Akhtar, I thought it is the other way around.

NURUL HUDA May 16, 2017 11:21am

Happy to see the current position of India in the World. Once, they were not ready to listen our begging but today they are requesting & trying to close to us. Maa tujhe salam.

dshuman12 May 16, 2017 11:31am

somebody is forcing you to take LOAN, Workforce as well as material from them you only have to have land.

So unless you have power to default without any loss or bad influence than go for it otherwise exercise caution.

Neutral Observer May 16, 2017 11:32am

Just like Pakistan rejecting India's south asia satellite is a mistake, India rejecting OBOR is also a mistake

venkatakrishna May 16, 2017 11:36am

We appreciate Dawn for publishing this article, non-biased one, otherwise usually biased. Prons and cons are there to see. China's hegemony can be seen wherever it puts its footprints. It will take some time for Pakistan to understand this.

IndianStrategyhouse May 16, 2017 11:36am

@Akil Akhtar Mr. Akhtar, while the animosity and distrust between Indians and Pakistanis is understandable, in this instance, India's concern about China's expansionist policy is aligned with Pakistan's long term stability and sovereignty. If China's endeavors in South China Sea or blatant bullying of Taiwan is not causing you any concern, you might want to talk it over with Pakistani think tanks. Data models can be created based on the CPEC Road-map document to simulate impact on Pakistan's economy and culture in 5, 10, 15 and 20 years. If analysis shows healthy local industry, health and education for the average Pakistani, sure Chinese influence would have been great for Pakistan. However, if data models show over 80% production in Chinese hands, agricultural patterns largely suited to Chinese preferences, lack of up-skilling & education for average Pakistani with outsourcing of Defence & International strategy to the Chinese, then the time to reverse that outcome would be now.

Shivam May 16, 2017 11:41am

There is nothing to convince. The third world countries of Asia and Africa have paid with their blood and life to overthrow the yoke of colonialism and know very well that OBOR is nothing less than a colonial enterprise at the service of an expansionist china.

SATT May 16, 2017 11:50am

By hearing noise some people are making OBOR seems more India centric than China centric.

akbar badshah May 16, 2017 11:55am

@VijU ....no doubt thatz why it/india adds 32 million illiterates to its fold.

ajay May 16, 2017 12:01pm

Thanks to Dawn to publish this document .Every Country need investment so is India and Pakistan but the question is how , when and why . We should leave to people of pakistan to judge what is good but my personal experience with chinese is that nothing is free from their side and they want more than 5 times return on their investment in any case in any way be it economic or political .The biggest problem for pakistan is in case this project does not give returns as expected then who will pay the returns , people of pakistan or Chinese government for this investment . I want people of Pakistan should think about this also .

vivek May 16, 2017 12:01pm

China doesn't have any credibility in undertaking a large project when its smaller projects have failed miserably. Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Africa are reeling debts. Its Common sense. India would not want to see her neighbours in debt as it would affect trade and ties. Communism is incompatible with democracies, hence China will face the problem with protests, government and policy change. China cannnot dictate decisions, but we all know they're trying to and will so so if neccessary.

adventurer May 16, 2017 12:11pm

Nothing being done to discuss about peace. Without it, it means again repetition of the same just like the SAARC group. Always for one reason or the other their will be conflict of ideas.

Any tension arises immediately the borders will be closed, then what is point in going ahead.
Hope such matters are mutually cleared and peace reigns.

KRIS May 16, 2017 12:12pm

Comparing OBOR to East India Company or Colonial Enterprise is pure hyperbole. I don't think that's what China is aiming for. But we may end up there if some of these projects go sour.

Right now OBOR is just an attempt by China to flood the world with their excess cash and provide employment for their citizens. Some of these projects will certainly end up becoming the new versions of Ghost Cities that preceded them. What happens at that point remains to be seen. China may write-off a lot of loans or they will start taking over foreign assets. If the latter happens, then we are looking at a colonial enterprise and a lot of global tension.

Dawn ADMIRER May 16, 2017 12:23pm

India does not see scope for Indo-Central Asian connectivity in OBOR.

So why get in to the Chinese maze and lose the way?

VIJAY KUMAR May 16, 2017 12:34pm

Food one eats does affect one's thinking in some way. Chinese are biggest consumers of canine meat.

outsider May 16, 2017 12:38pm

@VijU with all due respect viju ji, true that Indians (n Pakistanis) are good engineers, IT experts, , bankers and doctors (all technical fields, not management areas) but not good managers/planners and organizers- developing countries people lack in governance skills. That is why you generally find them working under goras/westerners.

subham kumar May 16, 2017 01:04pm

That's what we like about dawn .They are unbiased and neutral and we Indians love it.

Gopal May 16, 2017 01:05pm

There is no doubt that the Chinese have always nurtured an ambition to be the world Number 1 super power. Behind that desire is always a hidden wish of seeing the other as not equal to you.

NARENDRA KUMAR May 16, 2017 01:07pm

Some time too much of money becomes a problem. That,s the case with China! With 3-4 Trillion worth of cash reserve, where can it invest so that it can get returns and maintain its growth rate. Today only few countries are there who can absorb such investment, That's why US, Europe and India with trillion dollar economy becomes important. US with its current stand of America first, China desperately needs Indian Market. Making OBOR with countries whos economies are equivalent to the money being pumped in for OBOR i,e 150 Billion is not going to solve the issue, You need market a market with vibrant middle class. India with trillion dollar economy and with billion+ population is the only hope for China but India has decided to be independent.

A PAKISTANI May 16, 2017 01:10pm

Debt or no debt, colonization or no colonization, the question is, is the world today free from debt or colonization? Pakistan's circular debt is and has always been through the roof. It doesn't mean that Pakistan can't participate in trade initiatives like BRF.

India's persistent absence from such initiatives is not related to debt or colonization insecurities. It is its hegemonic approach towards all matters and issues related to Southeast Asia in particular and Asia in general. As Musharraf once said, ‘India is a huge country with a small heart', well, I say truer words haven't been spoken.

India is indeed a big country with a small heart, they don't want their competitor countries to become successful, they're like a bully who sits and roams around with his lackeys, yup I’m talking about Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh, India is the bully and they, the lackeys.

tara May 16, 2017 01:23pm

China will invest 64 billion USD for cpec. Everything like cement, steel and labour is going to come from there. Means the money invested will go back to China and Pakistan will be indebted by 64 billion USD without getting a single penny. What a smart trap.

Hawkins May 16, 2017 01:27pm

Apart from Bhutan all of Indias nieghbors were present, the following statement by the author sums it all up "India might be attempting a face-saver in bringing up questions of finances and transparency with OBOR, but it is unlikely to convince anyone beyond a domestic audience"

vikas May 16, 2017 01:53pm

Democracy and communism can never work together. Pakistan will find it the hard way. Government changes, politcal backlash and protests are biggest hurdles. China would find it difficult as the world isn't dictated by a one-party state where people are silenced.

Logic May 16, 2017 01:55pm

@Akil Akhtar , Check your own history first... You will come to know who interferes and who minds its own business..

Hemant May 16, 2017 02:15pm

Not all the heads of state really joined the meeting! They had sent some representatives to the event!

Indian May 16, 2017 02:17pm

In words of our foreign secretory S. jayashankar . if China wanted India to buy into it, they would “need to have larger discussions and those haven’t happened.” he said this in 2015

Well Meaning May 16, 2017 02:20pm

obor does not matter to india , there is nothing in it for countries other than china so good luck to all

Hemant May 16, 2017 02:22pm

@adventurer even if Pakistan had no dispute with india, india would not have joined this initiative in current condition!

Well Meaning May 16, 2017 02:24pm

@Neutral Observer that was FREE , you think CPEC is free for china ask your own econsomists. we don't think rejecting the satellite by pakistan was a mistake . it is every country's right to do what it wants to do . that is equality and democracy

Royal Jat May 16, 2017 02:26pm

@akbar badshah Check your literacy percentage (56%) and you are comparing themselves with India literacy (72%). Without Indian Doctors,scientists and engineers world can not proceed.

TAmilselvan May 16, 2017 03:06pm

@mandy . None of the western nations agreed with the draft put out by China though they attended it and wanted more transparency.

Taimoor khan May 16, 2017 03:11pm

"Yet it is important to also note that almost every large country in the world, apart from India, was already at the table in Beijing"

The above line sums it up pretty nicely. Who is getting isolated in the end?

Essaki May 16, 2017 03:14pm

India is right not to accept obor and it is right in conveying message to world about chinese colonial mindset and best example is srilankan hambota port.

Nepali May 16, 2017 03:15pm

@A PAKISTANI That's so true. They have interfered with our internal affairs so much that we never have a stable government. Maoists leaders stayed in India during the insurgency and attacked every part of Nepal with Indian arms. Every small step taken by Nepal is a big NO as if we deserve to remain poor for ever. Grow up India!

BAXAR May 16, 2017 03:30pm

@Taimoor khan "The above line sums it up pretty nicely. Who is getting isolated in the end?" Of course, the world is isolated.

ARMAAN May 16, 2017 03:45pm

what India is saying is right. there are cases of nations where China has entered, created infrastructure and swamped them into a debt trap.

Saraswat May 16, 2017 03:46pm

@Akil Akhtar no dear...no one can stop any country to progress. It all depends on the people and their talent..no one can stop Pakistan progressing.

Anurag May 16, 2017 03:50pm

Basically you all are not understand the very basic and valid point that India in no way is in need of this One Belt One Road initiative. Not because of connectivity, but because, India is not willing to take unnecessary financial risk. It has its own financial and infrastructure plans which might be slow just like Turtle but works fine. We are not in race of rabit & absolutely not interested in unnecessary loans which are not required for us.

Europe with its struggling economy and already stressed countries might need support from China and they definitely want to get associated with new world order where China is going to take lead, India always was and will remain unaligned.

Leave apart the political rants from all the sides, both China and India know very well that they are doing right from their own perspective and plans. We wish China a great success with their projects but we are not willing to participate as this does not fit in our kitty.

Hope that makes sense.

BABU May 16, 2017 03:52pm

INDIA is very important for OBOR that is why so much news of "not attending "by India. What ever India's official position is a fact about China's intent.

Maxx May 16, 2017 03:55pm

@Nepali What goes around comes around...Check the Naxalite, Moist insurgency in India, recently 25 Indian CRPF men killed, many hundreds killed in recent times. India behaves as a hegemony and think it is their right over small nations like Nepal, Bhutan and the likes of them...Nepal will prosper under help from China who encompasses other nations and takes others with her, unlike India.

Small minds small deeds....

A PAKISTANI May 16, 2017 03:55pm

@Nepali Right, it seems it's their state policy to destabilize and create troubles in another country just feed their own ambitions.

BAXAR May 16, 2017 04:18pm

@BABU "INDIA is very important for OBOR that is why so much news of "not attending "by India." So there is so much news about OBOR, so OBOR is very important. You finally admitted OBOR is very important. OBOR is very grateful to you.

FACT May 16, 2017 04:25pm

worlds second biggest population and fastest growing economy needs no china

Bharatiya Australian May 16, 2017 04:49pm

@A PAKISTANI ... if you don't like someone then why keep insisting to join your party??

Nitin May 16, 2017 05:00pm

@Taimoor khan being present in a conference and taking part in a project are 2 different things my friend.

Subir Paul May 16, 2017 05:11pm

India is right.

Satyameva Jayate May 16, 2017 05:17pm

Those who cannot read between the lines of financial contracts end up paying through their noses.

Iqbal khan May 16, 2017 05:19pm

@Naveen Chauhan what alternative to OBOR India can provide? Where it's own 370 million people are under poverty line, where there are the biggest slum areas in its cities, where there more severe social and economic stratification than any part of the world, where there are seen everyday news of rapes and infanticide, so and so on.

vorshal May 16, 2017 05:27pm

@mandy -- Right. It is all a matter of right leadership and direction.

RAMESH May 16, 2017 05:27pm

if some one has to worry about Indian absence it must be China. Considering the population and economic prospects of India it is stupid to believe that CPEC can matter big for Chinese economy but a small population of Pakistan and peanut size economy will definitely get affected by massive debt burden. Just think further, China builds seamless roads in Pakistan what they will use it for? will they put projects in Pakistan? suppose they take polluting industries to Pakistan, which is the best possible option as per learning curve of Europe and US, will local population benefit even in short run forget long term prospects. Good to keep on media hype for domestic audience, the conclusion is foregone.

Jsmkumar May 16, 2017 05:40pm

Is it win win investment or win only for China, only financial analyst can say.I think many landlocked countries will benefit from OBOR.For countries which has no sea ports , it doesn't make much sense. India is 1.2 billion population country,which got lengthy sea coast.Indian govt is planning a sea coast road called SAGARMALA.so India do not require OBOR.

Commentator May 16, 2017 05:59pm

@A PAKISTANI A completely one sided view. Anyone can say that about someone they do not like.

Commentator May 16, 2017 06:03pm

@Iqbal khan If one see only bad, there is a lot of it. If that is all you see and would like to see, good for you. Let India live in poverty. Strangely investments seems to come in billions tonIndia. I wonder why?

Commentator May 16, 2017 06:08pm

@Nepali There are no two countries which share a closer cultural bond than India and Nepal. There are always people who will hate. I have travelled to Nepal for business and pilgrimage. I have had wonderful experiences and interactions with the people there. China can pretend but never have a cultural bond.

Commentator May 16, 2017 06:09pm

@akbar badshah Yes sir. We are going backwards. Please feel happy.

PakPukudenguta May 16, 2017 06:13pm

Every one keeps beating around the bush, no one wants to talk about the specifics. Right, India is not part of BRF, so, is there any place on this earth where Indian goods can not be delivered, purely on account of India not being part of BRF??? Trade is through agreements, and if a country wants to import our goods, we can always deliver them irrespective of the relevance of BRF. What benefits us is our capacity to manufacture quality goods at reasonable cost. Labour costs and availability of skilled Labour are comparatively in our favor. At the latest, we will catch up with China within the next decade. Let me say boldly, whatever we do, China and Pakistan are our enemies, this fact is not going to change on our behavior. If not in the near future, but at some stage in the future, a showdown with these countries is imminent. India should be prepared for that.

vENKAT May 16, 2017 06:15pm

Sri Lanka is already paying the price at Hambantota port as mentioned in the article. When Chinese debt gets converted into Chinese equity because the debt cannot be repaid, the equity gives ownership of the port and the land to China. Essentially China bought Sri Lanka's land and port for ever.

srk May 16, 2017 06:19pm

China indias largest trading partner, yes. But who is to lose more if trade colapses? is it india. NO. With trade deficit highly skewed in chinas favour, the last thing they need is tariff increase in on of worlds largest market.

akram May 16, 2017 06:25pm

@Desi Dimag yes they are so smart that the india China trade deficit is $50 billion in favour of China!

very smart.

akram May 16, 2017 06:29pm

@Logic we can start with modi's history in gujerat massacres and his role helping the mukti bahini.

Faisal May 16, 2017 06:33pm

Well said: "India might be attempting a face-saver in bringing up questions of finances and transparency with OBOR, but it is unlikely to convince anyone beyond a domestic audience, at least for the moment."

Irad May 16, 2017 06:43pm

After second world war II, much of Europe & Japan were in ruins, yet after just 35-40 yrs later they are leading developed nations. What is required is good national leadership rather than economic aid @6% interest, along with strings attached

khan May 16, 2017 06:50pm

But in a setback to Xi's effort to gain full support, several European Union countries -- France, Germany, Estonia, Greece, Portugal and Britain -- indicated they would not sign one of the summit documents on trade.

Ismail May 16, 2017 07:11pm

India is in a sweet spot. We have a vast domestic market and a potential to reap rich harvests in the export market with the right policy framework. What does OBOR (or whatever it is called) bring to the table for India? Sovereignty concern is the primary concern. But even if we ignore sovereignty concerns why should India let away its economic advantages to be exploited by neighboring countries as well as China with nothing in return? Its great to see India take its own independent stand without buckling down.

Kulbhushan Yadav May 16, 2017 07:28pm

No convincing is needed from India. It is for everyone to see. Check cases with Venezuela, Zimbabwe , Sri Lanka

HYDERABADI May 16, 2017 07:46pm

@akram Bhai, I might not agree with your comment, but in what way Modi was responsible for Mukthibahini episode, he was probably around 10 years old at that time, so by this logic even the world war 1 and 2 happend because of Modi?

HYDERABADI May 16, 2017 07:47pm

My humble request to all Indians in this discussion, please don't worry about Pak - China relationship, as long as you are happy with your govt. decision, let be it and don't worry about Pak's future.

SAchin May 16, 2017 07:54pm

What's going to happen you know - China will invest heavily on the back of globalization, while all markets would turn protectionist by the time China would expect to reap benefits of OBOR. Disappointed, China will enslave all whom it would have financed and this would begin from our neighborhood!

AXH May 16, 2017 08:05pm

Path to Central Asia does not go through Bangladesh.

Abrar May 16, 2017 08:11pm

Wrong decision taken by India... India could not fight China and now India is more secluded. It cannot even prevent Bangladesh from Joining OBOR.

FaRhan May 16, 2017 08:11pm

Sir, In democratic countries where more accountablity needed the Chinese plan cold come to heavy scrutiny. There are processes and aprovals needed from Institutions to setup such projects which is unviable for such big projects. The Chinese way of getting things done doesnt suit to sch democratic setups. We saw how CPEC started in our country and still things are not known to people.

Pawan Shishodia May 16, 2017 08:25pm

@kHEM right sir

sanjay May 16, 2017 09:17pm

@Taimoor khan Read this article also to get a view of which big countries participated and how effective that conference was. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-39880163

Star_gazer May 16, 2017 09:46pm

@Neutral Akhil Akthar is right.

satish May 17, 2017 12:17am

@NARENDRA KUMAR Well said brother! Chinese need Indian market , they cant neglect worlds fastest growing economy and its affordable middle class.However they dont support India for NSG and expect india to join their projects. what you sow what you reap

Another view May 17, 2017 12:29am

Whether India promotes it or not, does anyone have any questions or other views on it? Only china will benefit from B&R projects, they will never let anyone else benefit. The next two generations of people will only be repaying these debts to Chinese.

Pk May 17, 2017 12:39am

if india is not partcipating in economic activity then it will be disatrous for them at later stage but then it will be too late.

Make sense May 17, 2017 12:40am

China planning economic initiative but the world's fastest growing economy is not interested ? China should go back to its drawing board.

Consumer May 17, 2017 12:47am

With no offense to Chinese but China is a clever and smart entity. They have their selfish interest. British created India and Pakistan to fight among themselves while the rest of the world enjoy watching the fight. China is taking a weakness and is exploiting it. Please who are intelligent always have long term vision on impact of the actions taken today while people with short term vision see excitement in short term but lack seeing the long term until it is too late.

patel, L.A. uSa May 17, 2017 01:39am

May be good for small countries. There is no comparison of China to America.USA is still the worlds largest economy and will be so . In the eyes of world China is still third world. Their people still suffers their standard of living and pay packets proves that. Lucky if average person earns $40 an hour.

Your Friend May 17, 2017 01:44am

Once the CPEC India can Join for Free... What is the part you do not understand?

No Debt!! No Downside!!

And no need to make a long term commitment. If it works to India's advantage we Continue... otherwise withdraw...

Jagan May 17, 2017 02:26am

Look at how china will dump it's goods and waste materials.

akbar badshah May 17, 2017 02:34am

@Royal Jat ....just google x illiteracy in india ...answet is 257 milllion (worlds largest pool ) almost two n a half size of pakisran....ohh yes..i repeat it adds 32 milllion every year to itz populace...so much to speak of incredible india.

Anwar May 17, 2017 03:16am

@Global citizen
The Chinese attempt may look similar to other similar offerings in the past but it is different as it has proved in Kazakhstan and Sri Lanka where China did not write off the debt what wanted control of sovereign land in lieu of default. This is different and many small countries will understand it soon.

India may present it's point anyway it likes but the reality is you end up giving up a part of your country for substantial period if you can't repay the loans.

It is to be seen how soon the locals in these countries will start their freedom struggle against China.

Raheel May 17, 2017 03:21am

India by virtue of of the size of it's economy is playing intelligent. India will be welcome to join OBOR/CPEC whenever it is ready. Pakistan's contentions will be sidelined by the very same countries which seem to stand together. Until then India can play and is playing a wait and watch game, while some of us will get our hands dirty and learn more realities about CPEC/OBOR. India gets to learn at our cost.

Auzie May 17, 2017 03:52am

Very simple question, why is that China says it will build all the infra itself and not cooperate with the participating nations in true partnership. Loans (by China) to build (by China) roads to be used by China. Where is International here, except that some nations are ready to give up a piece of their land for this road to be built. How are the nations themselves gaining other than importing Chinese goods.

Vince May 17, 2017 04:02am

US, India sent very junior officers to represent instead of cabinet rank ministers. The West like India have not signed on any agreements and were there for diplomatic reasons. Did any of the Western leaders go? Australia which is a close trading partner of China did not send any members of the govt. so you need to understand, 29 countries were there. 25 of them came to sit and watch.

Yokohama May 17, 2017 04:35am

This is just a sweetened version of "The Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere" which has wikipedia.

gt May 17, 2017 06:11am

India is not saying any such thing and it did not join OBR because China is holding 20% of Kashmir illegally and Pakistan 35% and that CPEC plan is going through illegal land of ours. Sooner or later world will object to OBR and CPEC and join with India.

amarendra May 17, 2017 06:27am

@Irad 6% interest rate with 17% ROI .

amarendra May 17, 2017 06:35am

@Iqbal khan Yes there is 370 million poor Indian . In the same time India also have 900 million middle class people ( more than the people of those countries who attended it) & the economy is growing at 7.5% . Do you know China exported electronics goods worth $ 16 billion in 2015 to India . This figure is enough to lure Chinese electronics giant to set up manufacturing facility in India & they are doing it as investment not as LOAN .

Sachin May 17, 2017 06:37am

@Abrar
India cannot fight china ,so the Chinese.

bramh mishra May 17, 2017 06:59am

its great news

you pay the robber to rob you

Never heard of this one before

Arshad May 17, 2017 07:44am

@mandy ; Looking at the attendance of world leaders at this summit. Apparently, it looks like " Grapes are Sour" for India !!!

Jitendra May 17, 2017 08:36am

@Desi Dimag- There are no think-tanks in india.

bhagwat goel May 17, 2017 08:49am

YES, WITHOUT ANY DOUBT.

javed May 17, 2017 08:54am

@Taimoor khan we are ready to isolated mr tamoor khan actualy you people just take a single sentence from there not a single european country accept that draft by china they need more transparency not like people like you just follow those who give money even srilanka reject china proposal

javed May 17, 2017 08:58am

@Abrar who say bangladesh is joined obor even srilanka reject it and more over its india decision if he should join the process or not why you people care for that

gannu May 17, 2017 09:07am

Just wait and watch. Every country is going to go in debt and their local products will be ignored. All will be Chinese. It is just a matter of time things will go other way.

skumar May 17, 2017 09:13am

@Nepali - you are giving wrong info. dear , India is also fighting the maoist within and were against the maoist extremism in nepal. Transition to democracy was well supported by india, but it was complicated by the maoists who are more close to china and hence worked at cross purposes against nepali congress. so direct your rant towards china , a totalitarian state with communist roots. Nepalese have equal rights as indians in india and serve in indian army as well. . that is something unique you will find nowhere in the world. Because nepal economy is closely linked with india , you have this wrong perception of looking up to indians with anger due to its large size. But the facts are totally opposite .. Many subsidised essential items comes from india as nepal is a landlocked hilly country . . India is taking care of nepalese people as much as their own. may be u don't know facts.

Jitendra May 17, 2017 09:21am

We can not continue to be in perpetual & constant opposition to China. There is no benefit to us. Joining OBOR is a far cry. We should not do that even in its present form. But we must somehow open a dialogue and a possibility of some other arrangement in future.

Effectively, all those nations which are out of the gambit of West lead, capitalist system, or those who have not so great reputation or role to play -For them China is trying to be a world bank plus IMF plus USA. China is trying to capitalise on these poor nations. Colonise them economically & politically.

Whatever it is, but do we have to oppose it for sentimental reasons? We must talk to China and keep working with them. Without joining OBOR in its present form.

Jitendra May 17, 2017 09:49am

@VijU there are 500 million dirt-poor in india. At least 100 million youth are unemployed. Massive poverty & filth across towns and cities. Corruption..etc. please have a reality check.

rajesh May 17, 2017 09:54am

A curry without salt is tasteless likewise OBOR initiative by china is tasteless without India, even they (China) know it.

ECHS May 17, 2017 10:25am

Let the OBOR continue but participating country should take loan at lower interest from india or any other countries. they may use own labours or from china .

secular May 17, 2017 11:35am

Why others countries will help China to make China rich?

Anon May 17, 2017 12:02pm

@ajay Pak Politicians and people are banking on the hope that eventually in the future, China will waive-off the Loans and in the meantime Pak will get security from China by its ICBMs that China will hide in the secret underground tunnels along the CPEC which is why it was moved closer to Indo-Pak border.

Jsmkumar May 17, 2017 01:06pm

Already many countries forgot to manufacture electrical, electronic or consumer items. Import from China has become a habit.All small to medium scale industries world wide are shut.surely all countries along OBOR are going to be flooded with Chinese goods.Chinese will suck juice from every country's economy. Poor countries will become debt ridden to China and will become slaves.

Mahesh May 17, 2017 01:16pm

@A PAKISTANI

Friend , I am strange to see such a arrogant approach from well educated person like u.

Joining OBOR or not, is actually right of India, not hegemony.Where as India hasn't stopped others or comment on their joining OBOR, the way you did. India doesn't like to interfere in others houses and that is the reason of consistent growth of India.

mansee May 17, 2017 01:57pm

all pakistanis have to do is google the word ' hambantota' and see what happened to sri lanka

Zheng May 17, 2017 05:14pm

India and Indian are working very hard to talk down CPEC trying to shake the confidence of Pakistani in this projects. Anything relating to CPEC has more Indians making unsubstantiated negative comments and in their effort to undermine the confidence of ordinary Pakistani. If I'm a Pakistani I would ignore all Indian comments and I'm pretty sure Indians do not have your best interest at heart.

Dr. Salaria, Aamir Ahmad May 17, 2017 05:38pm

What a silly joke?

secular May 17, 2017 06:11pm

@Nepali do not hide your identity. you are a pakistani. I have many Nepali friends who works in India. They all love India.

AKS May 17, 2017 06:17pm

One thing is clear that China is making sure to rule the world in the next not years but decadessss. Other countries will also benefit from the OBOR but they will all help build china as a greatest of all time.

Ramesh May 17, 2017 06:59pm

we have succeeded in service sector .. now GOVT Of INDIA now putting efforts in manufacturing we are sure will rock in manufacturing too. So India and china will not lose anything at last countries like Pakistan will suffer since it is not self sustained economy. China knows India strength and also India knows china strength.

One Road May 17, 2017 07:38pm

This one road one belt is about Pakistan's future, not India. India can stand up to China, and is standing up to China, but we in Pakistan cannot, as the saying goes, "If you can't beat em, join them" Pakistan does not have a choice. We do not wish to be independent, we wish to be where we have been for the last 70 years, i.e. subservient, first to the Brits, then the Americans, and now the Chinese, there is no need to mince words.

jamshed May 17, 2017 07:44pm

@Desi Dimag Yes, it amply shows up in your posts here as well.

jamshed May 17, 2017 08:11pm

@tara You are totally ignorant about Pakistan current construction boom even outside CEPEC proposed activities. Pakistan has large cement capacity and in recent construction boom this capacity is being utilized to its fullest and it is going to be rampedup many times to meet massive cepec demand so is other steel and other for building large structures. In one multi-billion $$$ project I know first hand China has used (and using) specialized engineering expertise from nations other than China and Pakistan. heavy machinery from Germany, Japan and US and 95% labor from Pakistan.

NarendraVKumar May 18, 2017 01:15am

Run of the mill leftist dribble.

M-usa May 18, 2017 01:40am

@Taimoor khan ...India was invited. Isolation is somebody not getting invited. In this case India chose not to attend.

M-usa May 18, 2017 01:53am

@outsider... that is a big generalization. US companies have more Indian CEOs compare to any foreign country. I know these companies have Indian CEOs ...Google/Pepsi/Microsoft/Harman Int/Adobe/Nokia/global foundries/Net App/conduent....I might have missed some. Not sure what you talking about.

Kunal majumdar May 18, 2017 09:22am

@Zheng: Comrade Zheng, India surely knows what's the ' best interest of China'. The champion of protectionism is teaching the world the virtues of globalization. What an irony.

J. Anwar May 18, 2017 10:15am

@Clean :Ford changed the world--So did Microsoft and Apple!

J. Anwar May 18, 2017 10:38am

@Akil Akhtar : India peddles its own canoe or crates and buys technology.

J. Anwar May 18, 2017 10:52am

@NARENDRA KUMAR : China's state Banks are printing money for the borrowers--how will they pay back? There are too many problems on the worksites of Chinese mega projects--and China needs to unload it excess cement and steel glut and excess manpower!

J. Anwar May 18, 2017 11:00am

@Zheng :Actually many Pakistanis are raising daily questions about CPEC , Chinese workers, Chinese profits and Pk debts and Rate of return for Pakistanis!

s.khan May 18, 2017 06:20pm

It is a case of sour grapes. India is worried about financial aspects of OBOR is ridiculous. Its state owned banks which account for 70% of loans are saddled with bad loans given to tycoons like Vijay Mallaya and other property developers. This is causing credit activity to be low. India's credit rating by the international credit agencies is just above the junk level. This doesn't square with the fastest GDP growth rate which is most likely a fake number as pointed out by The Economist( major international magazine).

Yuvaraj May 18, 2017 08:41pm

I think China is trying to exploit natural resources, market business,and transit free. Beware Pakistanis.