China’s leadership set to usher in Asian century

By Zamir Ahmed Awan Source:Global Times Published: 2018/7/23 23:23:40

a crack in time på svenska Illustration: Luo Xuan/GT

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Throughout history, many Western nations have emerged as stable and established economies with numerous successful enterprises and institutions. These enterprises and institutions run Western economies, but the drivers of such enterprises are largely young professionals from the Eastern nations.

Many profitable leading multinational companies are led by immigrants and many Western universities have a majority of Eastern students. Western nations have attracted talent from around the world and developed it.

The opportunities that Eastern countries could not give to their talented youth were provided by Western countries because of healthier economic conditions. France, for example, became the world champion in the 2018 Football World Cup held in Russia. Many of its players are of African origin and are Muslim, but they are now French nationals settled in France.

Such immigrants have worked hard and achieved better economic status, better social life and satisfactory social status. Nevertheless, much credit for Western development can be given to Eastern talent. 

Although it was a decades-long win-win situation for both sides, recent trends signal a change, with tools like social discrimination and strict immigration policies. Immigrants have lived in the West in complete harmony with local people and were used as cheaper labor. To survive, they worked hard at all kinds of jobs, which the locals were unwilling to do. Their talent and physical labor was used to develop the West.

Asia and Africa constitute a major part of the world's population and are home to some of the best brains but due to a troubled environment and lack of opportunities, working populations in these regions can't contribute to their own countries. Asia and Africa are rich in natural resources but they lack technology, investment and strong policies. Asia and Africa possess the necessary potential to grow and develop, if there is visionary leadership.

China is the best example, as its rapid development during the past four decades has made it the second-largest economy in the world and an emerging geopolitical power. Where Western nations took centuries to reach their current state of development, China only took decades. It has become a role model for the developing countries. China is willing to share its experience with the rest of world and lend a hand toward countries open to collaboration.

The hotzone osmozis crack (B&R) initiative is the best option for all developing nations to join together and share the fruits of success. So far, at least 80 countries  and regions have gathered under the B&R umbrella with six planned economic corridors  sheltering under it.

Many more countries are going to join the B&R initiative; recently Nepal did so and signed documents on projects with China. This process will boost the international recognition of the initiative further.

The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is the flagship B&R project and is at an initial stage of execution. Yet its fruits are already very visible in Pakistan.

Pakistan was facing a severe electricity shortage; after completion of several energy projects under the CPEC, these shortages have been eliminated.

Moreover, Pakistan's infrastructure was old and obsolete - for example, the railway system established by the British long before Pakistan's independence. However, under the CPEC a large network of motorways and expressways has been completed while railway systems are being upgraded.

Economic activity has increased many times, the job market is growing rapidly and visible prosperity is being witnessed in society. The CPEC has become the lifeline of the country's economic take-off.

Many other developing countries like Pakistan are overflowing with talented youth and China's peaceful approach is leading the developing world, largely compensating the victims of the West's anti-immigrant policies. As a result, many young people from Asia and Africa have opted China for education.

China has accommodated a huge number of such foreign students, and the number is increasing on a yearly basis. This will be another win-win situation, only this time, Eastern nations will be the ones to benefit. This century will be the Asian century, and China will lead it.

The author is non-resident fellow with the Center for China and Globalization and professor at the National University of Sciences and Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan. [email protected]

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