China & elements of uncertainty: A critical analysis | By Dr Mehmood-ul-Hassan Khan


China & elements of uncertainty: A critical analysis

IN the most recently concluded Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) annual conference 2023¡ China suggested numerous proposals for removing the elements of uncertainty in the regional as well as international spheres. China showcased its “holistic wisdom” and “visionary roadmap” for the further strengthening of socio-economic integration, greater regional connectivity and collective efforts in the post-pandemic quick economic recovery in Asia and beyond. It was held on the theme of “An Uncertain World: Solidarity and Cooperation for Development amid Challenges” which was very timely to collectively resolve the emerging socio-economic, geopolitical and geo-strategic conflicting trends in the region as well as in the world.

Interestingly, the BFA has once again taken the lead to provide a sustainable solution of removing uncertainty and combating these emerging complex and complicated issues through “solidarity”, “cooperation”, “openness”, and “inclusiveness”. Thus, it vividly reflected Chinese oriental wisdom and strategic importance of Xi’s valuable philosophies for achieving regional peace, world stability and harmony. While attending the opening ceremony and delivering a keynote speech the Chinese Premier Li Qiang rightly termed prevailing uncertainty as one of the main reasons for instability, disharmony and lack of peace in the region as well as in the world. He labelled China’s certainty as a “mainstay” that would safeguard world peace and development.

Interestingly, Li used a long phrase to highlight the strategic significance of China and its economy in the region and the world i.e. long-term stability, commitment to development, concrete and courageous actions to achieve progress, confidence and openness as well as willingness to share. It would be an ideal recipe for gearing up economic recovery and achieving sustainable socio-economic development in the days to come. It projects the positive, productive and participatory role of China in peaceful co-existence, global governance and world economy (IMF latest published report 2022-2023 clearly upholds the leading role of China in the global economy i.e. more than 33 percent in 2023 and beyond). It also upholds Chinese’s constant peaceful persuasions of conflict resolution through dialogue, diplomacy and development in resolving the hotspots of the region and world alike. The recently China’s facilitated and inked Saudi-Iran peace agreement and Chinese sincere diplomatic efforts to achieve truce in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict are the two latest prime examples of the Chinese successful diplomacy in this regard. Due to its rigorous diplomatic efforts China has become an ideal connecting hub converging conflicting realities into human integration and achieving peace and stability in the region and beyond.

Undoubtedly, its macro-economy has become the last hope for quick economic recovery which has further consolidated regional and world economies and provided new impetus to economic stability and sustainability. Hopefully, China’s positive outlook, production capacity, commitment of further opening-up, modernization and persuasions of qualitative development will mitigate all uncertain factors in the international community which is commendable. Critical analysis of the emerging socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic factors reveals that the USA is one of the main sources of economic, financial, monetary, fiscal and trade uncertainties in the world. Its policies are spreading economic depression, instability, financial meltdown, banking collapse and social unrest around the globe. The ongoing high interest rate monetary policy of the US FED has badly hit its banking & financial industry and sent confusing messages to the world economy.

Furthermore, the US constant imposition of unilateral sanctions against others, especially China and Iran, has become a stumbling block for regional as well as international development and cooperation. Its ongoing trade, technological and CHIP war against China has already disturbed global supply chains and resultantly the prospects of quick economic recovery have been “dimed” and “doomed”. Unfortunately, the role of the US in regional and international politics has not been up to the mark because it has been power oriented and mainly following its own coined “US China Containment Theory” for so many years. It has … (been) intentionally redefined, redrafted and realigned policies to further divide the world on ideological lines and promoted bloc politics. It has also led to the split of the global economy and politics alike. Its US “Military Complex Theory” is rampant everywhere and now waters of Black Sea, China South Sea and ASEAN are currently witnessing and its regional allies’ are also provoking a scheme of arrangements in the shape of QUAD & AUKUS and numerous economic partnerships to contain China.

It is a bitter fact that the government and policy makers of the US want to disrupt and divide the supply and industry chains that have spontaneously been formed in the market for many years according to its own will. Now the regional economic development and world stability is at stake because of prevailing geopolitical uncertainty and huge economic risks to the global economy. It seems that Asian countries do not agree with the US approach of divide, destruction and debris in the region and beyond. The US intentionally sowed the seeds of discord in the Asia-Pacific region and even the world, attempting to build a wall of isolation around China, the international mainstream society, particularly the majority of Asian countries, do not agree with this approach.

To conclude, regional peace, stability, inclusiveness, openness and socio-economic integration is must to achieve the dreams of greater socio-economic prosperity and integration in Asia and beyond in which Chinese modernization and qualitative development would play an important role in the days to come. In this regard, China should play a leading role to promote spirited collaboration instead of unfettered competition. The hawks are very active in the Asia-Pacific region for provocations and containment of China. On the contrary, Asian countries do not want to be part of any power politics show, zero-sum games, bloc confrontation and last but not the least economic isolation. They all urge the strategic importance of unity and cooperation in order to make the region more resilient and able to withstand shocks of the external uncertainties. They all call for peace and development in Asia and beyond.

China has continuously promoted high-level opening-up to the outside world and peaceful and inclusive development. In this regard the rise of China’s economic growth, size, scope, utility, role, participation and contribution in the regional as well world economy has significantly increased its role in the global economy and governance alike which is good omen for other countries and communities alike. Moreover, Chinese constant peaceful persuasions to conflict resolution have further strengthened elements of certainty in the world’s affairs. The world has now taken China as the mainstay that safeguards world peace and development.

The BFA has once again triggered the resonance and consensus through unity, cooperation, openness and inclusiveness. Interestingly, the Chinese President’s valuable Global Development and Global Security Initiatives have once again showcased its strategic importance for achieving regional peace, stability and world peace. Gurus of strategic management and experts of international relations term uncertainty as anti-development and peace whereas, certainty leads towards peace, stability and harmony in the region and beyond and China is the “keystone” of socio-economic certainty and human compassion through promoting unity, solidarity, openness, modernization and qualitative development.

—The writer is Executive Director, Centre for South Asia & International Studies, Islamabad, regional expert China, BRI & CPEC & senior analyst, world affairs, Pakistan Observer.

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