India, China need to work together to find new equilibrium: Menon
Making use of their newly found weight in the international system, India and China need to work together to find an equilibrium which would help sustain the rapid growth of both the countries, said National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon.
"It is in our interest, in India's interest, that they find a new equilibrium smoothly and peacefully. With the new found weight in the international system, India and China need to understand and consult each other about these changes, so as to find an equilibrium that sustains our own rapid development," Mr. Menon said after releasing the ORF China Seminar Series and another book, titled "Clashing Titans" studying the Asian Powers China and Japan and Russia and China.
Emphasising the need for an update, balanced and ground level knowledge about China, Mr. Menon described the study and the series by Observer Research Foundation as "particularly praise worthy" as "both objective and subjective factors would evolve India-China relationship positively in the near future".
Mr. Menon said irrespective of transitions, the leaderships in both countries are focused on sustaining growth and ensuring the welfare of the people. He said the countries are now trying to "diversify the economic relationship to investment and co-production while at the same time trying to work to restore trade balance."
"We have built up and shown our ability to manage bilateral differences", whether it is on border, transnational rivers, etc, Mr Menon said, adding "India need a conducive external environment to realise our transformation".
The NSA said "the crisis of world economy was unlikely to be overcome soon by the traditional drivers of economy in the West. Asia will have to play that role. And it is in India's interest it does so".
The released volumes, include five books on China, edited by Mr. M. Rasgotra, President , ORF Centre for International Relations and a former Foreign Secretary., and "Clashing Titans: Military Strategy and Insecurity Among Asian Great Powers", authored by Dr. Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan.
Dr. Rajagopalan said Asia has become clearly the centre of global politics and with the power shift to Asia, there are a lot of uncertainties. She said the baggage of history with major powers having a history of wars with each other, unresolved border and territorial problems and rising nationalism are worries, but "they can be handled if treated with care, and there is still time to do this".
Mr. Rasgotra said the India-China relationship is "most critical" for both the countries when both India and China are changing and "the world relationship is changing".
Mr. K. Raghunath, also a former Foreign Secretary, who guides ORF's China Seminar Series, emphasised on the need to study China closely and in detail. He said while the personalities are important, more important are the policies followed by China. He said the Series is meant to be "a mature identification of China's best practices and mistakes, and not the least the implications for us, strategic and other".
ORF Director Sunjoy Joshi said the books on China "captures the changing face of China, the country as it stands today" while the "Clashing Titans" is the result of three years of research on the military strategies and evolving geo-political outlook of the major Asian powers China and Japan, Russia and the US.
He said the 21st century India-China relationship can no longer be viewed through the prism of the last century and the grammar and vocabulary describing the growth, interactions and engagements of these two continent sized countries must also evolve.