• Fri. Sep 23rd, 2022

Ladakh opposes mobile app ban: strained relations between India and China

ByCindy J. Daddario

Mar 25, 2022

Foreign Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi will meet on Friday, sources said.

New Delhi:

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived in New Delhi on Friday for talks, the highest-level meetings since border clashes two years ago have strained diplomatic relations between the Asian nuclear-armed giants.

Below is an overview of the current state of India-China relations:

TROUBLED BORDER, REGIONAL RIVALRY

Thousands of Indian troops remain deployed along India’s remote border with China in the Himalayan snow deserts of Ladakh, where hand-to-hand fighting erupted in June 2020.

At least 20 Indian soldiers and four Chinese soldiers were killed in a clash in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley – the first deadly encounter between nuclear-armed neighbors in decades.

Their 3,500km-long undemarcated border has remained largely peaceful since a border war in 1962, and the two countries still claim large swaths of each other’s territory.

After the Galwan clash, senior officers from both armies held more than a dozen rounds of talks to defuse the standoff in Ladakh, but progress was limited.

Last February, after multiple military talks, Indian and Chinese troops completed a withdrawal from a lake region in Ladakh. A few days later, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his Indian counterpart S. Jaishankar agreed to set up a hotline.

Beijing has repeatedly said the border standoff does not represent the entirety of China-India relations, while New Delhi has argued that peace along the border is essential for the two countries to work together.

New Delhi has many other concerns about China’s activities in almost all of India’s neighbors.

In addition to tensions in the Himalayas, India’s mistrust stems from Beijing’s support for old enemy Pakistan, competition for influence in Nepal, and concerns about China’s economic clout in Bangladesh, Myanmar and in Sri Lanka.

INVESTMENTS AND PROHIBITIONS OF APPLICATIONS

China is India’s largest trading partner, with two-way trade growing exponentially since the turn of the century to reach $95.02 billion in 2021/22.

Trade remains heavily tilted in favor of Beijing. India’s trade deficit with China is the largest of any country, and the imbalance continues to widen.

More than 100 Chinese companies, including state-owned companies, operate in India, including electronics manufacturers that dominate the country’s mobile phone market.

Since 2020, however, New Delhi has tightened the screws on Chinese players in Asia’s third largest economy by increasing surveillance of investments or imports and banning certain mobile applications.

The Indian government had previously withheld investments worth billions from Beijing, but last week it said approvals for 66 proposals from neighboring countries – including China – totaling $1.79 billion had been approved.

India last month also blocked access to dozens of Chinese apps for security reasons, bringing the number of such restricted mobile apps to more than 300.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)