‘China govt does not like concept of Indo-Pacific’
China is wary of the Quad, with many observers pointing out that Beijing sees the grouping as an attempt to contain it.
New Delhi: China does “not the like the concept of Indo-Pacific,” a senior Chinese academician has said, while articulating Chinese concerns about the nomenclature. Interacting with reporters on Friday in New Delhi in the presence of officials of the Chinese Embassy and Chinese foreign ministry, Prof. Lin Minwang — of the Institute of International Studies at China’s Fudan University — also articulated Beijing’s reservations on the four-nation “Quad” in the region and sought to know why the United States had not invited any Asean country or South Korea or Pakistan to be a part of it. The United States, India, Japan and Australia are members of the Quad, the four-nation informal grouping that stands for freedom of navigation in the Indo-Pacific region. The Chinese academician said he was aware that India wanted to play a larger role in the region. “We don’t like the concept of Indo-Pacific. We need a new concept,” Prof. Lin said.
China is wary of the Quad, with many observers pointing out that Beijing sees the grouping as an attempt to contain it. It is widely known that China also prefers the term “Asia-Pacific” to the nomenclature of “Indo-Pacific” which is preferred by countries like the United States and India.
On Pakistan, Prof. Lin said, “Pakistan is the largest consumer for Chinese military hardware”, adding that China has been trying hard to promote “India-Pakistan reapproachment”. Prof. Lin said, “We want to see peace and prosperity in south Asia. China wants to see a stable Pakistan. Pakistan is the largest consumer for Chinese military hardware.”
Asked about the successor of the Dalai Lama — regarded as the highest Tibetan spiritual authority — Prof. Lin said the next Dalai Lama should be decided by Tibetan tradition and “not be decided” by either the United States or the current Dalai Lama. Prof. Lin is part of a team of Chinese academicians visiting the capital.
On the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) which India recently refused to join, senior Chinese academician Prof. Zhang Weiwei—-who is currently the Director of the China Institute at the Fudan University—-felt it would be a “historical mistake for India not to join the RCEP”.
On the turbulent situation in Hong Kong, Prof. Zhang said it is due to the “failure of Capitalism” there. Hong Kong was returned by Britain to China in 1997 but Hong Kong is governed under the “One nation two systems” policy of China. “Hong Kong needs to restructure its economy. It must go through serious reform. The (economic) structure of Hong Kong is the same as it was 22 years ago. Real estate financing has control of over 50 percent of the GDP,” Prof. Zhang pointed out.
Prof Zhang also took potshots at US President Donald Trump’s stand on many issues, arguing that these were ill-informed. The senior Chinese academician said that in contrast, top leaders of the Communist Party of China undergo “study sessions” on a range of complex issues and it is only then that China takes a policy stand on an issue as part of its “collective leadership”.