Chinese media on Gujarat election 2017: Litmus test for PM Modi’s reforms, China watching closely

By: | Published: December 15, 2017 11:15 AM

Gujarat election 2017: Many observers in China are closely watching the outcome of assembly elections in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home state of Gujarat.

gujarat election result 2017, gujarat election result, chinese media on gujarat election, global times, gujarat poll result, narendra modiPrime Minister Narendra Modi shows his finger marked with indelible ink, as he leaves after casting his vote during the second phase of state Assembly elections, at Ranip in Ahmedabad on Thursday. PTI Photo

Gujarat election 2017: Many observers in China are closely watching the outcome of assembly elections in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state of Gujarat, says a report by official Chinese daily Global Times. “The western Indian state of Gujarat went to the polls for the second phase of the Assembly elections on Thursday, and many observers in China are watching the outcome closely, with the results due out on Monday,” Global Times reported, saying the Gujarat elections “may be a litmus test for Indian voters’ attitude toward Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s reform agenda. That’s an issue of deep concern to China because of its increasing economic interaction with India.”

The Global Times report noted that the BJP is making “serious” efforts to avoid defeat in Gujarat. “Modi’s “Make in India” campaign and his economic reforms such as the goods and services tax have to some extent been seen as a continuation of the so-called “Gujarat model of development” that Modi claimed could be replicated across the whole of India,” the report said.

Commenting on the attack by opposition parties and some economists on the reforms measures taken by PM Modi, the Global Times said, “…but those most qualified to evaluate the “Gujarat model” are the people of Gujarat. Whatever the election result is, it will have a great impact on the public opinion environment for the implementation of the rest of Modi’s reform agenda.”

Gujarat election result is also being closely watched by Chinese investors. A win in Gujarat will help PM Modi take more reforms measures that will benefit the Chinese investors as well at a time when the amount of Chinese investment in the country has increased tremendously. “The outlook for India’s economic reforms is deeply related to a good number of Chinese companies doing business in India such as Xiaomi and OPPO. If the BJP wins an overwhelming victory in Gujarat, the Modi administration may take more radical approaches to economic reform. China’s companies will feel the changes no later than India’s,” Global Tiems said.

The report, however, cautioned that a loss for BJP would be “he biggest setback yet for the economic reforms initiated by the Modi administration.” It is possible that people in other states would be “influenced by a BJP loss in Gujarat”.

Global Times also suggested China to “take a close look at BJP’s Gujarat campaign.” “Companies doing business in India should prepare for possible changes in economic policy over the long run and possible volatility in India’s financial markets next week after the results are announced,” it said.

The exitm polls of the Gujarat elections released on Thursday predsicted a clear victory for the BJP. One agency, Today’s Chanakya, even predicted that the saffron party may win 135 out of 182 assembly seats in the state.

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