Cities as the New Engine for Sino-Indian Cooperation

By Ni, Pengfei | Journal of International Affairs, Spring-Summer 2011 | Go to article overview

Cities as the New Engine for Sino-Indian Cooperation


Ni, Pengfei, Journal of International Affairs


Despite close geographical proximity and centuries-old ties, the relationship between China and India has been filled with obstacles and stumbling blocks. The majority of academic research and media reports tend to examine relations at the national level, yet cities have become increasingly important due to urbanization and globalization. This paper argues that, through the city platform, India and China can turn potential cooperation into reality. The differences between Chinese and Indian cities beget complementarity that provides great potential for cooperation. Local governments in both China and India have high levels of administrative power in decisionmaking. Cooperation between cities can avoid many obstacles that prevail in national-level cooperation. Local governments will not only be motivated to cooperate, but also can accomplish a great deal in promoting cooperation between the two countries. The conditions for city cooperation are improving. Cities can and should become a key path and a new engine for Sino-Indian cooperation.

**********

Geopolitics, boundary disputes, mutual distrust and trade imbalances make China-India cooperation difficult at the national level. China and India's boundary disputes, for example, are unlikely to be resolved in the short term. Out of consideration for mutual security interests, both central governments will likely restrict cooperation in locations where territorial control is contested. The Indian National Security Council has called for the legislative body to pass "Security Restricted Area" legislation aimed at limiting or even forbidding countries like China from investing in these sensitive regions. (1) In economics, the increasing bilateral trade imbalance between China and India has become an obstacle for cooperation at the state level. A certain level of imbalance is inevitable, but a large imbalance is not beneficial for either party. These concerns primarily manifest themselves in relations at the national level. Local governments outside disputed regions and areas of strategic importance have more freedom to consider mutual cooperative benefits and are less concerned with contentious interstate relations or the national trade imbalance.

At the same time, the rapid pace of scientific and technological development and the increasingly globalized economy have reduced the significance of borders between countries and increased the importance of cities as a focal point of international affairs. Indeed, cities are becoming independent economic units participating in global competition, cooperation, division of work and development. With an increasing number of people and economic activity concentrated in cities, the role of the city is more and more significant.

Home to several of the world's largest cities and with a long-standing border dispute between them, China and India can benefit from cooperation at the city level. This paper argues that enterprises and civil society at the city level can overcome barriers to Sino-Indian cooperation at the national level and encourage cooperation and exchanges in many fields, including trade, investment, tourism, culture, education, technology and municipal construction. Under certain conditions, cities can become the engine of cooperation between the two countries.

GREAT POTENTIAL IN CITY-LEVEL COOPERATION

While China and India are experiencing different rates and levels of urbanization, cities have been a common platform for the bulk of social and economic activities in both countries. The differences between Chinese and Indian cities beget complementarity and great potential for cooperation. This potential merits further exploration.

Urban populations play an important role in both countries, though China is more urban than India. In 2009, 46.6 percent of China's population, or more than 585.8 million people, lived in cities. (2) China's more than 280 cities (those over prefecture level and the prefectures) accounted for 62 percent of GDP and 59 percent of national fiscal income in 2008. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Cities as the New Engine for Sino-Indian Cooperation
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.