Indian tanks near border may hurt investments: Chinese Media

Beijing: Criticising the reported deployment of battle tanks by the Indian army near the India-China border, Chinese state-run media today said that the move may affect flow of Chinese investments into the country and called for joint efforts to avoid misunderstandings.

"A media report stating that nearly 100 Indian tanks have been positioned near the Indo-China border to counter any possible threat grabbed people's attention as more Chinese firms are looking to increase their investment in India," an article in the state-run Global Times said today.

"However, it is puzzling that while deploying tanks near China's border, India still strives to woo Chinese investment," it said.

"The deploying of tanks near the Indo-China border may hit a nerve within the Chinese business community, causing investors to weigh the threat of political instability when they make investment decisions," it said.

The article refers to reports of Indian army deployment of tanks in the Ladakh border to catch up with China's aggressive military and infrastructure build-up across the border.

China too reportedly has major mechanised units on its side of the border and tank deployment was aimed at ensuring parity, the reports said.

The Global Times article said, "China and India share a large potential for economic and trade cooperation, and while this may make Chinese enterprises enthusiastic about investment opportunities in the Indian market, those firms should remain calm in the face of investing risks".

According to a Global Times report published in May this year Chinese investments in India grew six fold in 2015 to USD 870 million.

India which is weighed down with over USD 46 billion trade deficit with China in about USD 70 billion annual trade has been pressing Beijing to step up investments and has removed a number of security-related issues for a smooth flow of Chinese investments.

K J M Varma