SCO summit can be venue to reinforce globalization

By Hu Weijia Source:Global Times Published: 2019/6/12 21:08:41

If India wants to be treated as a great power, it may be well worth the effort to shoulder great responsibility during the 19th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit, which will be held on Thursday and Friday in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

Earlier this week, the India-based Economic Times published an article titled "India Likely to join China-Russia Call for New Trading System on SCO Sidelines." India is forecast to overtake the UK this year as the world's fifth-largest economy, but its voice hasn't been heard much in multilateral trading systems. New Delhi has always chosen to keep a low profile in formulating international trade rules, but it's time for a change.

The Indian government may have realized that the "America First" strategy is making it difficult for the South Asian country to benefit from serving as a strategic partner of the US. The Trump administration treats US allies and strategic competitors equally when it comes to core-interest related issues, and sometimes its allies are asked to make more concessions. The outlook for the Indo-Pacific strategy is less rosy than it appears, because New Delhi has to acknowledge its subordinate position relative to the US and accept Washington as the bloc's leader. US President Donald Trump's decision to end US preferential trade treatment for India has added to evidence that India cannot dodge the US trade protectionism bullet by strengthening its strategic partnership with the US under the Indo-Pacific strategy.

If India wants to be a great power, it needs to continue its policy of non-alignment. Since Narendra Modi won a second term as prime minister, the new government may need to rethink its relations with the US to pursue greater independence. Trump has shaken the foundations of global trade, rolling out protectionist measures against a broad range of countries and regions. His trade protectionism is a countercurrent in the world. India needs to take a clear-cut stand against trade protectionism. It's what a great power should do.

India, China and Russia have common interests in promoting economic globalization. The upcoming SCO summit can be an opportunity to talk frankly about related issues.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times.


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