Pant 2010Summary

Even as India and China sign documents with high-sounding words year after year, the distrust between the two countries has grown in recent times. There has been tension over Chinese claims of territory in India’s north-east and its intrusions in the region, and actions such as objecting to the prime minister’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh and denial of visas to people from that state. At the same time, trade between the two regional giants is booming, and political and cultural exchanges are at an all-time high. At the global level too the rhetoric is all about cooperation on issues such as climate change and economic restructuring. It is a curious relationship and one that is hard to decipher. Understanding it is all the more important, however, as India and China will be the prime movers of this, the Asian century, and how they relate to each other will shape the politics of Asia and the world.