India placed as fourth most powerful index as China closes in to become the first: Asia Power Index 2020

India placed as fourth most powerful index as China closes in to become the first: Asia Power Index 2020

    According to the Sydney-based Lowy Institute's Asia Power Index for 2020 that ranks 26 nations and territories, India has become the fourth most powerful country in the Asia-Pacific region. India sat on the fourth spot in the index following Japan that sat in third. However, the economic growth potential India lost during the pandemic gave an advantage to China. A study showed that China is closing in on the U.S. as the most powerful country influencing the Asia-Pacific, the US is still the most powerful per the Lowy Institute but the US lost its prestige and reputation due to its poor handling of the COVID-19 situation.

    Bloomberg reported that the U.S. “lost prestige” due to its poor response to the pandemic, multiple trade disputes and President Donald Trump’s moves to withdraw from multilateral deals and agencies, according to Herve Lemahieu, the study’s research chief and director of Lowy’s Asian Power and Diplomacy Program.

    “The pandemic was a game-changer,” he said in a phone interview. “It contributed to a double whammy of problems for the U.S. because on the one hand, it's poor handling of the Covid-19 crisis has resulted in a diminished reputation. And on the other hand, obviously, it will take many more years to recover from the economic fallout of the pandemic.”

    “I think it’s more likely that China will eventually level with the United States and may, toward the end of this decade, even surpass the United States. But not meaningfully enough to pull ahead by substantial margins,” said Lemahieu.

    Bloomberg also reported that India has ceded its strategic ground to China. "It's certainly delayed India's arrival as the great power in the region. And it also means that India will be quite distracted by the development challenges and by the new poverty rate, with more newly impoverished people in South Asia," Herve Lemahieu, study's research chief and director of Lowy's Asian Power and Diplomacy Program told the media.

    Lowy Institute’s estimates projected that India will reach 40 per cent of China's economic output by 2030, compared with the 50 per cent estimated in as the top 10 has been rounded out as Russia, Australia, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia.

    Lowy Institute reported that overall, Asia's economy, which was assured to become larger than the rest of the world economy combined in 2020, now faces 'a perfect storm of public health, economic and strategic challenges' due to the pandemic.

    The rising coronavirus cases in India and the public being torn between fits of different issues that storms every household, be it the Dalit murders, Muslim Lynching, a supposedly drug/mafia infused entertainment industry, a cacophonous media, the GDP’s downfall and the cauldron of opinions that only seem to divide the people, have all been pointing towards a bleak future.

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