You are here

Vibha asked: What is the influence of China's growth on north-east India and the Indian Ocean region?

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Email
  • Whatsapp
  • Linkedin
  • Print
  • Namrata Goswami replies: The influence of China’s growth on northeast India can be two-folds. The first is one in which the people of the northeast could get inspired by the Chinese economic growth model, especially in its south western province of Yunnan, and emulate such a globalising model. Already, the chief ministers of the region are ardent supporters of the “Look East” policy which aims to create land and rail connectivity between India’s northeast, Myanmar, and Yunnan in China. This could foster economic connectivity and bring in prosperity to the northeast. The other influence is more security related. China’s claim on Arunachal Pradesh and its water diversion plans on the Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibet are creating a public perception in the northeast that China is a threat to India. Hence, while China’s influence with regard to economic connectivity could be positive, its territorial claim and water diversion plans are negative influences.

    Similar is the case with the Indian Ocean. China views the Indian Ocean, especially the Malacca Strait, as the lifeline for its energy supplies and exports, which is critical to maintaining its internal growth. It wants to collaborate with other Indian Ocean countries to ensure the safety of these lanes. However, China is an authoritarian regime with a closed political system. Hence, its military modernisation, acquisition of an aircraft carrier and assertive claims on the South China Sea is creating an atmosphere of militarisation of international waters. The Chinese influence is thus highly securitised.