Global and/or regional development at the start of the 21st century? China, India and (South) Africa, by Timothy M Shawa, Andrew F Cooperb & Agata Antkiewiczb, Third World Quarterly, Volume 28, Issue 7, 2007
Projected economic growth for China and India presents considerable opportunities and dilemmas for the African region, especially for human development, rights and security around its own growth centre, South Africa. This article juxtaposes a set of overlapping perspectives—emerging economies versus nics, fragile versus developmental states, new regionalisms, resource conflicts and new South – South relations—to analyse the present and prospective implications for sub-Saharan and South African development. Sustained Chinese and Indian growth may present opportunities, even windfalls, for some countries, companies, classes and sectors on the continent but not for all. This opens up a number of fundamental questions in terms of an expanded research agenda. Will Chinese and Indian multinational corporations and supply chains operate similarly or differently from familiar Anglo-American ones? Will civil societies within and diasporas around India and China affect their respective transnational relations? And will African regional institutions be able to moderate any negative impacts from these changing dynamics? Recent review articles have suggested that international relations (ir) in Africa is ‘different’. But what is neglected is how the emerging relationship with China affects this assertion. The article concludes with reflections on implications for development policy and theory arising from ‘drivers’ such as China, India, and South Africa at the start of the new century. Our thesis is that, given growing divergences in Africa to sustain resource extraction, the emerging economies have to deal with fragile well as developmental states. Crucial in determining this outcome is whether or not the continent’s single ‘superpower’ can facilitate or mediate this process given its own national interest and human development concerns.