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China, Russia hand-in-glove to derail India’s UNSC dream?

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photo credit: www.thehindu.com

New Delhi: A report appeared on Friday claiming that both China and Russia tried to scuttle the process of  the UN General Assembly which recently adopted a negotiating text by consensus for the long-pending Security Council reforms.

photo credit: defencetalk.net
photo credit: defencetalk.net

 

The report further said had the Chinese and Russian diplomats succeeded in their ‘stealth operation’, it would have diluted the entire negotiations on unnecessary technicalities which would have meant the UN would be negotiating UNSC reform for years and years without a decision in sight.

However, India, supported by a number of countries, got wind of the ‘stealth operation’ and vehemently opposed the move.

The group led by India even launched a protest at UNGA president, Sam Kutesa’s residence over the weekend, forcing him to remove the offending paragraphs.

The Chinese, however, were not ready to give up without a bigger fight.

The Chinese diplomats approached a number of national capitals to get the text amended before it reached the floor on Monday – the day when it was finally adopted by the UNGA.

Some countries even agreed to support the Chinese, but Bejiing eventually failed to get the numbers that India had.

Interestingly, when all this was happening, the US strangely remained silent – either to see whether could win on its own, or because they are keeping their powder dry to kill the process later, or because they silently supported the Sino-Russian move.

Due to India’s hard lobbying, it apparently became an India-China battle in those last frenzied moments in the UN.

However, seeing the Russians backing the Chinese, after supposedly supporting India’s case for almost half a century, came as a big shocker for New Delhi.

This week, Russia sent its deputy foreign minister, Gennady Gatilov to meet Sujata Mehta in the MEA, after their performance in the UN.

A statement from the Russian embassy said, the two “exchanged opinions on the main aspects of intergovernmental negotiation process considering the current various options for the increase in the United Nations Security Council membership. The Russian Side reaffirmed the readiness to support the Indian candidature for the United Nations Security Council.”

However, India this time has taken the Russian betrayal hard.

As per the report, China and Russia are now planing to take the battle forward and the two are now said to be working on the Jamaican government to remove Courtney Rattray – the main brain behind the UNSC reform text.

If they succeed, Rattray will not be able to head the negotiations on the text and it can be given to someone unfamiliar with the history of the text. If this happens, it would come as a big blow to India.

The UNGA decision to negotiate UNSC reform succeeded on two counts. First, after 23 years there is a text on which the UN can negotiate a reform agenda. Second, in a fair fight, the 13-country group led by China and including Pakistan and Italy called United for Consensus could not drum up enough support for stalling the process.

(with inputs from Zeenews)

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Chinese Police Catches Hold of $1.5 Billion Money in Online Lending Scandal

The internet has helped financial platforms attract money from financial novices with little knowledge of the risks involved.

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Chinese policemen watch as depositors from Ezubao gather outside the State Bureau for Letters and Calls Reception Division office in Beijing, Jan. 1, 2016. China's policy ministry says it investigated 380 online lenders following an avalanche of scandals. VOA

Chinese police have investigated 380 online lenders and frozen $1.5 billion in assets following an avalanche of scandals in the huge but lightly regulated industry, the government announced Monday.

Beijing allowed a private finance industry to flourish in order to supply credit to entrepreneurs and households that aren’t served by the state-run banking system. But that threatens to become a liability for the ruling Communist Party after bankruptcies and fraud cases prompted protests and complaints of official indifference to small investors.

The police ministry said it launched the investigation because person-to-person, or P2P, lending was increasingly risky and rife with complaints about fraud, mismanagement and waste.

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The police ministry said it launched the investigation because person-to-person, or P2P, lending was increasingly risky and rife with complaints about fraud, mismanagement and waste. Pixabay

The ministry gave no details of arrests but said more than 100 executives were being sought by investigators and some had fled abroad. It said authorities seized or froze 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) but gave no indication how much might be returned to depositors.

Police say some lenders and investment vehicles were brazenly fraudulent, while others collapsed after inexperienced founders failed to manage risk.

Monday’s statement said P2P lenders were investigated for complaints including wasting money, reporting phony investment plans and using illegal tactics to raise money.

Lending through online platforms grew by triple digits annually until 2017 when regulators tightened controls.

Depositors lent 1.9 trillion yuan ($280 billion) last year, but that was down by 50 percent from 2017, according to the Shenzhen Qiancheng Internet Finance Research Institute.

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The internet has helped financial platforms attract money from financial novices with little knowledge of the risks involved. Pixabay

The outstanding loan balance stood at 1.2 trillion yuan ($177 billion) at the end of 2018, down 25 percent from a year earlier, according to Diyi Wangdai, a web site that reports on the industry.

P2P lenders are part of a privately run Chinese finance industry the national bank regulator estimated in 2015 had grown to $1.5 trillion.

The internet has helped financial platforms attract money from financial novices with little knowledge of the risks involved.

Many lend to factories and retailers or invest in restaurants, car washes and other businesses. But inexperience and poor risk control means a downturn in business conditions can bankrupt them.

Also Read: Sales of Smart Feature Phones Expected To Be About $28 Billion Over Next Three Years

Finance as a whole has come under tougher scrutiny after a 2015 plunge in stock prices led to accusations of insider trading and other offenses.

In one of China’s biggest financial scams, authorities say depositors lost 50 billion yuan ($7.7 billion) in online lender Ezubo before it was seized by regulators in 2015.

The founder and his brother were sentenced to life in prison in 2017. (VOA)