(This article forms a part of the View From India newsletter curated by The Hindu’s foreign affairs experts. To get the newsletter in your inbox every Monday, subscribe here.)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent remarks at the opening session of Voice of Global South Summit were sobering. “It is clear the world is in a state of crisis,” he said, pointing to how the multiple crises, hardly a creation of the Global South, were affecting its countries the most. “We have seen this in the impacts of COVID pandemic, climate change, terrorism and even the Ukraine conflict. The search for solutions also does not factor in our role or our voice.
As India begins its G20 Presidency this year, “it is natural” that India aims to amplify the Voice of the Global South, Mr. Modi said.
While a solidarity among countries of the Global South is valuable, the year ahead looks increasingly challenging and fraught with uncertainty, as former National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan points out in this piece. Amid a spectre of an all-out war that is ominously present, the world must prepare for possible dangerous escalations, including the use of nuclear weapons and the opening of new fronts, he writes. There could be several fallouts as wars escalate and big powers turn more aggressive in their desire to assert and retain power, and there in lies the real test for Global South solidarity.
- Lessons from Russia’s Ukraine war: If the war was left to Russia and Ukraine, the former would have, in theory, secured a victory. Despite initial miscalculations, the Russians made incremental gains in the early months of the war. But what changed the ground reality was Western help to Ukraine, writes Stanly Johny.
- Wolf warrior diplomacy: While Zhao Lijian, China’s most famous ‘wolf warrior’, is sidelined, the hard edge to Chinese diplomacy is here to stay, writes Ananth Krishnan.
- Oil deal: As China seeks to expand its footprint in the region, the recent signing of a multi-million-dollar deal between Xinjiang Central Asia Petroleum and Gas Co and the Taliban in Kabul could be a fundamental test for the future of Afghanistan-China cooperation, writes Kabir Taneja is Fellow, Strategic Studies Programme, Observer Research Foundation.
- A riot of losers: Jair Bolsonaro must take the blame for what happened in Brasilia, which was reminiscent of the January 6, 2021 riots at the U.S. Capitol by Donald Trump’s supporters, said The Hindu editorial on the violent storming of state buildings last weekend. You can view the dramatic scenes here.
- The Great Recession, COVID-19 pandemic are shining the spotlight on the role of macroeconomic policies, Employment policy expert of the ILO, Kee Beom Kim tells A. M. Jigeesh in this interview.
India’s bilateral trade with China reached a record $135.98 billion in 2022, Chinese Customs data showed on January 13, 2023, driven by surging Indian imports of Chinese goods that were up by more than 21% last year, Ananth Krishnan reports.
Amid its growing assertion in the neighbourhood, China, along with Bhutan, has agreed to “push forward” a three-step roadmap for Expediting the China-Bhutan Boundary Negotiations.
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar is scheduled to visit Colombo this week, and will likely give a “positive response”, as Sri Lanka desperately tries to restructure its debt to qualify for IMF support. His visit will follow a visit by a ministerial delegation of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to the crisis-hit island nation.