An Introductory Note for the Articles
Malini L. Tantri’s article compares China and India, the two biggest emerging market economies in the world, with respect to their trade in pollution-intensive industries and tries to discuss the policy environment supporting such growth. Tantri's analysis is carried out for 13 categories of pollution-intensive products based on the Standard International Trade Classification Revision 3 classification. Tantri’s analysis reveals significant growth in trade in these products in both countries, with a higher intra-industry trade and a significant correlation with environmental stringency. Between the two, India seems to be enjoying a better comparative advantage. Findings suggest a need for adopting cleaner production processes and a cautious approach towards industrial promotion.
Amina Reem V.P. and John S. Moolakkattu’s article explores the transitions of queer understandings in China, which are considerably shaped by social, political, cultural and historical factors. While the Mao era silenced homosexuality, the reform era created new avenues for public discussions on sexuality, though they were confined to urban China. The representation of queerness in Chinese media like television, films, pop music, and so on, signifies the role of cultural identities having larger implications in a local and global context. However, queer voices in China have been subject to ambiguous yet persistent censorship. In this context, placing queer politics at the cross-strait tensions between China and Taiwan gives a better understanding of its soft power potential. Taiwan is the first Asian country to legalise same-sex marriage, and queer politics has become an important soft power tool to enhance its democratic credentials in the international community. Strategic promulgation of a progressive queer policy in China will have potential benefits in enhancing its legitimacy in the international arena. Reem and Moolakkattu’s article assesses the state of LGBTQ rights in China and how the country traverses between the grey areas of allowance and disallowance in its approach to the queer question. It also explores the potential benefits of granting LGBTQ rights as a soft power strategy, taking a cue from the Taiwan experience and the constraints to attaining such status.
Since the establishment of traditional Chinese foreign aid, the People’s Republic of China has participated as both a donor and a recipient in foreign aid mechanisms. This has become a major issue in international relations. Until the Export-Import Bank of China and the China Development Bank were established in 1994, Chinese foreign aid could be considered traditional. As the focus of this study, traditional Chinese foreign aid has gained a disparate place in the literature due to its high level of involvement with aid mechanisms, domestic economic resources and motivations. In particular, the relationship between the PRC’s foreign aid motivations and its economic resources showed how effectively mainland China applied the foreign aid mechanism, which has been one of the main issues of these international relations. Cengiz Mert Bulut’s article examines the relationship between the different economic conditions and foreign aid motivations of the Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping periods and attempts to reveal certain continuities and changes between the two periods.
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