A gaffe-prone Japan is a danger to peace in Asia – Gideon Rachman – FT.com


Looking back over some of my most popular blogs, I think this is worth a read

Originally posted on Dr Alf's Blog:

This article from Gideon Rachman in the FT is AN EXCELLENT READ. Check it out!

A gaffe-prone Japan is a danger to peace in Asia – FT.com.

I have been tracking the news on Japan from the perspective of the Chinese media published in English and must admit that Gideon Rachman has a point.

When I was in China last October, I picked up that the previously very high levels of Chinese tourists has plummeted as a result of the national spats. Also Japanese business interests in China must be anxious.

Personally, I think that the US granting Japan greater military freedom could very easily be misunderstood and lead to greater regional tensions; of course, slower growth rates in Asia are not helping Asian relations.

Any thoughts?

East Asia blank map China/Japan/Korean peninsu...

East Asia blank map China/Japan/Korean peninsula as a SVG file (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Lunch with the FT: Raghuram Rajan – FT.com

IMF Chief Economist Raghuram Rajan at the Worl...

IMF Chief Economist Raghuram Rajan at the World Economic Outlook press conference.WEO Press Conference, Washington DC, IMF Headquarters (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is top of the FT’s most-read list – it’s a thoroughly recommended interview of the  governor of India’s central bank. Check it out!

via Lunch with the FT: Raghuram Rajan – FT.com

As I reflected on the excellent article my mind drifted to India Prime Minister Mondi’s call for more inward investment, earlier this week. Soon my mind wandered to China. I thought of the lightening fast response of China’s government to the 2008 financial crash. Next, I was reflecting on my extended trip to India, earlier this year. India is like the famous glass, either half-full or half-empty, depending upon viewpoint. As a passionate advocate of democracy, I really admire India, which is by far, the world’s largest democracy. Power in India is widely devolved, with many checks and balances, plus vested interests, of course.

Much as I love India, I fear that under the leadership of Prime Minister Mondi and Governot Rajan that radical reform will be too slow. Much of my earlier career has been involved in delivering strategic change, including in the government departments and international agencies. I have also worked extensively in India.

I fear that Raghuram Rajan, former Chief Economist of the IMF, will not be given the power to dole out bitter IMF medicine to India.

For me, a radical reform agenda for India would include opening the economy to foreign investment, outsourcing the public sector and drastically increasing infrastructure investment.

All over India in major cities, one can see the extension of the underground railways – this is often financed by bilat loans from Japan – this is an important start.

Any thoughts on overcoming India’s challenges?




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