China’s SAARC: Can India Opt Out? by Binoda Kumar Mishra

Dr.Binoda Kr. Mishra Director, CSIRD

China is creating flutters for its new global venture of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). It is aggressively working towards achieving its goal of global eminence by 2049, i.e. the centenary year of socialist revolution in China. As part of her strategy, China wishes to engage all her neighbours and succeeded in doing so except being structurally engaged with South Asia. Her attempts of becoming part of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is opposed by India which fears loss of pre-eminence in the region. But China seems to be determined to deepen her engagement with South Asian countries and is luring all the South Asian countries with economic promises. It seems China is largely succeeding in her attempt. It leaves India with fewer options. India needs to quickly assess the implications of China’s South Asian initiatives and articulate her moves for the region. Ignoring China is certainly not an option. What is suggested is a cautious engagement with China and present herself as an alternative to China for the countries in the region.

China’s SAARC: Can India Opt Out?

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