Gunjan Singh, Research Associate, Institute of Chinese Studies
The results of the recent election in Maldives are an indication that a major challenge to the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative is emerging from the vicissitudes of domestic politics in BRI partner nations.The victory of Ibrahim Mohamed Solih of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) in the island nation’s presidential election reiterates the fact that there is something very wrong with the direction of Chinese investment. In the last few years there has been a rise in sentiment against Chinese investment in the countries where the BRI is in play.
The election also strengthens the impression that in the South Asian region, China will have to work at multiple levels to counter Indian influence. Continue reading “Tightrope walk for incoming Maldivian president” →
Jabin T. Jacob, PhD, Fellow, Institute of Chinese Studies
What does the removal of term limits for the Xi Jinping presidency in China mean for the developing world and, in particular, for South Asia?
One possibility is there could be a demonstration effect. China’s decades-long rapid economic growth has been a source of envy and inspiration for many countries in the developing world. Some like Vietnam, for instance, have used China as a model in launching its own opening up and reforms process. Other countries, including many in South Asia, have seen Beijing as an alternative to the West for financial resources and capital.
With Xi’s latest move, an ambitious autocrat could try to sell the idea to his people or elites that matter that he – and he alone – holds the solutions to a country’s problems.
And often, as in the case of President Abdulla Yameen in the Maldives, who has imposed a state of emergency in the island nation, they will do so with considerably less finesse than Xi. Continue reading “Unlimited Xi Presidency in China: Implications for India” →