China’s state media appreciates India’s strides in foreign policy, economic progress under PM Narendra Modi’s leadership

Under the shadow of a decades-old border conflict, China’s state-run Global Times has heaped praises on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for India’s strides in economic progress, social governance, and foreign policy.

The article, penned by Zhang Jiadong, the Director of the Center for South Asian Studies at Fudan University, Shanghai, in a rare instance, highlights that India’s domestic and foreign situation has changed tremendously compared to four years ago.

Interestingly, the coverage in Global Times, which is a Chinese communist party paper, acknowledges India’s robust economic growth, improvements in urban governance, and a shift in attitude toward international relations, notably with China.

“For example, when discussing the trade imbalance between China and India, Indian representatives earlier used to primarily focus on China’s measures to reduce the trade imbalance. But now they are placing more emphasis on India’s export potential,” writes the author.

The article has commended India’s proactive approach to fostering a “Bharat narrative,” emphasizing the nation’s strategic confidence.

The author says with its rapid economic and social development, India has become more strategically confident and more proactive in creating and developing a ‘Bharat narrative’.

“In the political and cultural spheres, India has moved from emphasizing its democratic consensus with the West to highlighting the ‘Indian feature’ of democratic politics. Currently, there is even more emphasis on the Indian origins of democratic politics,” Jiadong points out.

This shift, according to the Chinese professor, reflects India’s ambition to escape its historical colonial shadow and position itself as a global influencer, politically and culturally.

On India’s foreign policy strategy, Jiadong highlights the nation’s multi-alignment approach and bolstering ties with major global powers like the US, Japan, and Russia while displaying a nuanced stance in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

The article notes that India’s strategic thinking in foreign policy has undergone another change under PM Modi’s leadership and is moving toward a great power strategy.

“Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi assumed power, he has advocated for a multi-alignment strategy, promoting India’s relations with the US, Japan, Russia and other countries and regional organizations” writes the Professor.

The article notes that India has always considered itself a world power. However, it has only been less than 10 years since India shifted from multi-balancing to multi-alignment, and now it is rapidly transforming toward a strategy of becoming a pole in the multipolar world.

In conclusion, the author says “It appears that a transformed, stronger, and more assertive India has become a new geopolitical factor that many countries need to consider.”

In response to the article in the Beijing-based media, the Indian government said that it reflects growing recognition of India’s burgeoning global influence.

“This rare acknowledgment of India’s advancements and Prime Minister Modi’s strategic vision by Global Times signifies the growing recognition of India’s burgeoning global influence and the implications of its assertive posture on the international landscape,” it said.