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Monday, April 11, 2005

India China Agreements

India and China are signing various memoranda of understanding today. I am interpreting these in the light of the few things I have heard and know about India and China. These things make me think really hard about the implications of the interest both countries have shown in coming together. If I can read correctly this is a major "joining of forces" of India and China.

Here are somethings that, if they pan out well for both the countries, should make the world sit up and take notice. Are the current development being undertaken keeping in mind these things or are they simply a matter of chance. That question has a great bearing on the outcome of this "joining of forces". In the case of former there is a very high chance that things will hot up in Asia in the coming decades. In the case of latter, well its a far stretch.

Please let me know your views.

  1. Roughly 50% of India's GDP comes from the services sector, whereas roughly 50% of China's comes from manufacturing.
  2. India has a large english speaking (fluently) population. China is facing that challange.
  3. Indian development is spear-headed by private players, givernment is acting as a facilitator (or a hindrance) whereas Chinese development is more government sponsored and private players enjoy a comparatively marginal role.
  4. Currently China has got more people in the working age-group than India, however India will have more people in the working age-group than China over the next 30 years.
  5. If you look at Indian manufacturing its geared towards more of short-run multiple variety products. China on the other hand is very large runs and few variety products.
  6. China has well established infrastructure whereas India is facing that challange.
  7. Indian Banking (Development Funding) System is the best in the world whereas China is sorely lacking in that department.
  8. China has a structured sports program compared to a nearly non-existent one in India.
  9. All said and done China has better regulation and possibly implementation than India which lacks in both adequate "appropriate" regulation (with abundance of "inappropriate" regulation) and a lack of enforcement (and enthusiastic enforcement of "inappropriate" ones)
  10. India has the potential to be the kitchen and office of the world. China has the potential or almost is the factory of the world.


  1. India and China each have nearly a billion people.
  2. Both have ambitious space programs, military programs, missile programs.
  3. Both have strong traditions that have a similar psyche.
  4. Tea! (May be China does not have "cutting" yet!)
  5. Both have a similar inclination towards saving v/s spending.
  6. Strong Family systems are seen in both cultures.
  7. Corruption is a rampant problem in both the countries.
  8. Strong tradition has given a strong art, crafts and culture possibilities. Chinese have marketed those very well but yoga and aurveda could well change the face of art and culture like what tai chi and feng sui have done for China.


  1. Religion and the sheer multiplicity and co-existance of many religions and beliefs. (Dis-regarding Modi's and other politically motivated rioteers)
  2. Movies and by far the greatest movie producing machinery ever put in motion (again disregarding some of the overused furniture like "couch" and "beds" and also "make-up vans")
  3. Cricket or its existance as an industry that drives the global cricket economy (Forget the lack of vision seen in under-representation at the ICC, or the "arranged" Indo-Pak affairs that go around)
  4. Tourism and abundance of the "tourist potential" places.
  5. The variety of Cuisines of India, I am not sure if China (or the world) have as much variety.


  • Language (Its difficult for each other to grasp the other language however India could have an advantage in swiftness to learn new language whether or not we exploit it is other matter) Bring a udipi guy (or a Punjabi or a Gujrati or anyone else for that matter) into remote chinese village and soon you will know how soon Indians can learn any language in the world.