India benefiting from its neighbours?
February 16, 2007 1 Comment
An article in the Economist believes that regional unrest has been helpful for the country:
In some ways India benefits from the fact that so many countries around it are a mess. It attracts investment and trade that might have gone to the neighbours. Its garment makers, for example, have won business diverted from Bangladesh because of political turmoil there.
India’s achievements—a stable, almost uninterrupted democracy, and a fast-growing economy that dominates the region—look all the more impressive set beside the failings of its region.
The article goes on to say, however, that even though the country may have benefited to some extent, if India wants to maintain its rapid pace of growth, it should strive for regional peace and harmony, perhaps even lend a helping hand to its ailing neighbours since regional strife could cost the country much more in the long term:
In its present buoyant mood, India may think that it can cope readily enough with living in a low-rent, violent district. Fine―until something big goes wrong. India’s rising international prestige and economic allure could both be put in jeopardy if the country is sucked into some headline-grabbing regional conflict. The best way to reduce that risk will be to find ways of helping the neighbours with a bit of gentrification here and there whenever the opportunity arises, however grudging they may be in their response.