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  • China's Foreign Policy Challenges and Evolving Strategy

    The end of the Cold War, the September 11 terrorists’ attacks, preponderance of US power and globalisation have shaped the present world order and posed new opportunities and challenges for China. China’s need to fulfill its grand strategy of acquiring comprehensive national power within this external environment and overcome the existing challenges has given rise to its post-Cold War foreign policy strategy. Given the challenges it faces, its primary need is to ensure continuance of a peaceful environment to sustain its reform and modernisation programme.

    January 2006

    India and the East Asia Summit

    The inaugural East Asian Summit (EAS), representing nearly 50 per cent of the world's population with 20 per cent of global trade, and comprising 16 nations that are on a dynamic path of economic development, is obviously a mega event. For India, it is yet another opening to increasingly align itself with this region and play a commensurate political and security role. There is no question that the centre of gravity is decisively moving to East Asia and developments in this region will offer great economic opportunities and pose serious challenges as well.

    December 20, 2005

    India’s Balancing Role in the Central Asian Power Game

    In 2001, Uzbekistan opted to become the linchpin of US policy goals in Central Asia. It was then argued that Washington would guarantee the nurturing of geo-political pluralism in the region. This was viewed against the backdrop of the historical ascendancy of China and the imperial decline of Russia. Much has happened since then. Today the US is facing a deadline to quit its airbase in Karshi-Khanabad (K-2), set up in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, because of Tashkent’s suspicion that Washington had plotted the revolt in Andijan on May 13, which led to a bloody massacre.

    December 14, 2005

    India-China Energy Cooperation: Attaining New Heights

    Last week witnessed a major development on the India-China energy front with the joint bidding plan for Petro-Canada's Syrian assets by India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC). In September this year Petro-Canada expressed interest to sell off its 38 per cent stake in the Al Furat field, which produces about 70,000 barrels of oil daily accounting for 50 per cent of Syria's total output. This is the first time that Indian and Chinese firms have joined together to secure stakes in an overseas energy facility.

    November 28, 2005

    Railway to Lhasa: An Assessment

    On October 12, 2005, China announced the completion of a railway line to Tibet—one of the world’s highest train routes. This railway line climbs 5,072m (16,640ft) above sea level and runs across Tibet’s snowcovered plateau—dubbed the roof of the world. China’s official Xinhua news agency while celebrating the achievement said that the equivalent of USD 3 billion had been spent on the challenging 1,118km (710-mile) section, after four years of construction.

    October 2005

    The Political Economy of China's Defence Modernisation

    World over, differences exist about the impact of military expenditure. While development economists consider excessive military expenditure as wastage, many defence economists have a different view. With the defence versus1 development debate unending, China makes a unique contribution. While China’s defence expenditure is not well known, the hinese experience shows that investments in development do provide an expanded economic base subsequently, which will take care of defence needs.

    October 2005

    India and the Iranian Nuclear Standoff

    India’s September 24 vote in the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) supporting the resolution moved by Britain, France and Germany (EU-3) on Iran’s nuclear programme has a raised a significant debate within the strategic studies community on the value and wisdom of the policy stance.

    July 2005

    Foreign Economic Policy-Making in China

    Understanding the inner dynamics influencing the ongoing process of economic reform in China, especially the flexibility achieved by government bureaux is important for strategic policy makers in India. The brief study seeks to determine the relationships of dominance, correspondence, and contradictions as well as the direction of influence, the sequencing between government bureaux, and the end results of their joint operations by applying the micro-macro linkage approach.

    July 2005

    China and North Korea: A Puzzle of Sorts?

    With its repeated admissions of an ongoing nuclear weapons development programme utilising highly enriched uranium, and with an alarmingly advanced missile launching capability, North Korea is at the fulcrum of a crisis that while raising the spectre of nuclear proliferation on the Korean peninsula also impacts the very foundations of security in northeast Asia. Despite this brinkmanship, a North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman assured on May 8, 2005, "our will to denuclearise the Korean peninsula and seek a negotiated solution to it still remains unchanged."

    June 29, 2005

    Tug-of-possible-war over Taiwan

    On March 7, China unveiled a new Anti-Secession Law in its third session of the 10th National People’s Congress meeting. The law legalizes China to take military action against the renegade province, Taiwan. The full text of the Anti-Secession Law stated a three-point scenario for ‘‘non-peaceful action’’ against Taiwan.

    April 05, 2005

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