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Lee Walker, Economic Development in the States, vol. Susan C. Norman J. Glickman and Douglas P. While the primary aim was to increase awareness about his State, it was one of the few occasions where MEA asked an Indian Chief Minister to lead a delegation. Initial sub-national activism in India was focused on the U.
In recent years, there has been an increasing emphasis on strengthening links with South East Asian countries, especially Singapore and Japan. With the sharper focus on infrastructural development and urbanisation, a number of States are looking to countries like Singapore, which also happens to be the highest source of Foreign Direct Investment FDI to India. In China, this trend of sub-national participation in foreign policy began first with the coastal provinces reaching out to neighbouring countries.
Localizing Foreign Policy
Due its extraordinary growth rate and magnitude, the case of Guangdong has a special relevance. It would be important to point out that local-level linkages, in fact, played an important role in enhancing not just economic ties between China and the U. Sub-national ties have been strengthened not just by visits by Chinese Provincial leaders to the US and vice-versa, but also the Sister City programme introduced in by President Eisenhower.
The first sister city link between China and the U. Ever since, there are 44 twinnings between Chinese provinces and US states and pairs of city-to-city exchanges In the context of strong grassroots-level linkages between the U. That has been demonstrated by an increase of US governors and mayors making trips to and seeking ties with China.
If one were to specifically look at sub-national linkages between India and China, the partnerships between State governments and provinces have been going on for over a decade, and they are not a new development. The level has definitely witnessed an increase. In , Li Peng, senior Communist leader, visited Bengaluru. This was followed by a number of visits by Indian Chief Ministers to China and Chinese governors and other provincial level leaders to India In recent years, the one instance which has been famous is the relationship between Gujarat and China.
In his visit in , Modi received a warm welcome from the Communist Party and interacted with important business leaders.
Both provinces have close business linkages and have similar characteristics It is not just Gujarat which is popular, a number of Chinese businessmen have also established close links with Bengalur and Chennai, two important hubs of economic growth of Southern India. The focus of most of these visits have been economic, though efforts have also been made to foster linkages in other areas by exploring sister-city linkages. Nitish Kumar, who visited China in with a primarily economic emphasis, also explored the possibility of building linkages between Bihar and Shandong Province in China, which was home to a strong Buddhist tradition like Bihar.
The possibility of sister province relations between Guizhou and Sichuan with AP were explored Mobile Giant Xiaomi, a Chinese brand, will produce smart phones at Sri City, and it has also tied up with Taiwan's Foxconn to start assembling phones Such visits, apart from enhancing business ties, have also been seeking to cement ties between cities and local-level municipalities. Sub-national linkages between China and India are driven not just by interactions between political leaders.
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Chinese provinces, such as Sichuan and Yunnan, with a specific interest in South Asia have not only visited, but also organise events where they bring together businessmen from India. Apart from the possibilities of greater trade and investment between both countries, sub-regional organisations like Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar BCIM Corridor have also helped in enabling ties between West Bengal and Yunnan.
The Kunming Initiative, started in , has resulted in a large number of exchanges between Calcutta Kolkata and Kunming and in both cities were twinned. Emphasising on the relevance of the BCIM corridor in promoting sub-national linkages between both countries, Jacob argues :. It is important to note that there is an increasing realisation in both countries that such linkages between both countries cannot be restricted to a few provinces.
The main reasons for India seeking to increase its interactions with provinces in China are to increase goodwill and expand the constituency for better relations between both countries.
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There is an important domestic component to the same as well. While some regions have grown fast and have been successful at attracting Foreign Direct Investment FDI , others have been left behind. The attempt is to reduce disparities between regions and seek investment to regions that have been left behind.
PM Modi has spoken about the need for equal opportunities for economic growth and the need to bridge the gap between developed and under-developed regions One of the drawbacks of the current engagement is that it is restricted to a few provinces and states. Even the sister city linkages that have been signed have been driven more by economic character, for example Beijing-Delhi, Bangalore-Chengdu, Guangzhou-Ahmedabad. While for long the focus was on the industrially developed provinces like Guangzhou, efforts are being made to engage with more Chinese Provinces.
From India there have been efforts to engage with provinces like Zhenjiang and Shandong From China, provinces like Sichuan have been seeking to increase their presence in India and are looking to engage with newer provinces. Politically too, efforts are being made to reach out to provinces that have not been given enough attention.
It was proposed that Punjab too will enhance agricultural cooperation with Jiangsu, and in addition to this, they will seek to have sister city linkages In a letter to the Chief Minister, the Deputy Director of Foreign Affairs, Zhang Tao, referred not just to the massive opportunities for cooperation between both provinces but also the historical and cultural similarities and how both provinces are bound by a strong Buddhist heritage While it is encouraging to see that engagement between cities of India and China is increasing, there are a number of lessons that both countries can pick up from the engagement between the US and China.
Localizing Foreign Policy: Non-Central Governments And Multilayered Diplomacy.
While at the economic-level local linkages established through visits of provinces to the U. One example that is often cited to highlight the relevance of sister province arrangements is the Iowa-Heibei sister province arrangement. President Xi first visited the U.