Ideas

Peace

In a world set to reach nearly 10 billion inter-connected people, power will come from creating peace, prosperity and freedom so that we can make breakthroughs in how we live together, and this requires a transformation in the very definition of power, and the purpose and principles by which it is exercised

GPC’s Macro Thought Leadership

GPC’s research focuses on the geostrategic changes in the world and the implications of for peace, prosperity and freedom. Our analysis seeks to find the patterns and identify the new forces that are the signs of our times and will determine the future of the world

We bring our network of business leaders, entrepreneurs, influencers and thinkers who are at the frontline of change across to provide insights into the global issues that are rapidly changing the world and how they see an impact being made for good

 

We recognise the complex and rapidly changing nature of India’s markets and economy as it grows and expands internationally and have focused the firm’s thought leadership on detailed research to generate insights into the macro-environment, market strategy, investment opportunities and challenges to generate attractive risk adjusted returns

We live in revolutionary times. Increasingly political, economic and social volatility is driving change on a global level, creating both risks and opportunities for international investors. Greater Pacific Capital’s thought leadership and investing strategy placed it at the forefront of global change

Selected news that makes the difference

India, U.K. Reaffirm FTA Commitment at Strategic Dialogue.

India and Britain have reaffirmed their commitment to conclude a mutually beneficial free trade agreement (FTA) at the annual U.K.-India Strategic Dialogue in London, as the two sides reflected the "good progress" on the 2030 Roadmap since the last review.

India, Nigeria Agree to Early Conclusion of Local Currency Settlement System Agreement.

The agreement, signed during a joint session of the India-Nigeria Joint Trade Committee, aims to promote the use of the Indian Rupee and Nigerian Naira for cross-border transactions. The agreement will enhance bilateral trade and mutually beneficial investments in sectors such as crude oil, natural gas, pharmaceuticals, power, renewable energy, agriculture, education, transport, railway, aviation, and MSMEs development.

UN Revises India’s 2024 GDP Growth Upwards to 6.9% from 6.2% Projected in January.

The United Nations has revised India’s growth projections for 2024 and has projected the economy to expand by close to 7% this year. The agency’s World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) report as of mid-2024, stated that India’s economy is forecast to expand by 6.9 per cent in 2024 and 6.6 per cent in 2025.

World Bank to Fund c.US$360m for Bengaluru’s Water Management, Flood Mitigation Works.

Once the agreement is signed, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) will split the loan amount, respectively, by Rs 2,000 crore and Rs 1,000 crore. With the loan amount, the BBMP plans to fortify stormwater drains and will also be extending the Koramangala valley waterway project to connect with the Dakshina Pinakini River. Meanwhile, the BWSSB will utilise their allocated funds to create new underground drainage networks and sewage treatment plants (STPs).

Largest Ever Global Delegation to Witness India's General Election.

In keeping with the tradition of the Election Commission of India (ECI) to foster a culture of transparency and reiterate its commitment to high standards of electoral practices amidst the democratic nations, 75 delegates representing 23 countries are in India to witness the Indian general elections as part of the International Election Visitors’ Programme (IEVP).

Spotlight on the key monthly news events shaping media coverage in India

Media coverage in the world this month covered the death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and China’s military drills around Taiwan.

 

Death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi

 

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, a hardliner seen as a potential successor to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was killed when his helicopter crashed in poor weather in mountains near the Azerbaijan border. The charred wreckage of the helicopter which crashed on 19th May carrying Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and six other passengers and crew was found early the next day after an overnight search in blizzard conditions. Media coverage sought to explore the implications.

 

An article in Iran International commented on how even more than a week after the death of the President, new and conflicting details about the incident continue to surface, leaving the circumstances of the helicopter crash shrouded in uncertainty. “The first formal report by the General Staff of the Armed Forces on the helicopter incident was published. Although this report ruled out the possibility of the chopper being shot down, it did not state the main reason for the crash and mentioned that “more time is needed for a definitive conclusion”. Adding to the perplexity, it has come to light that the President's bodyguard was notably absent from the ill-fated helicopter… An interview with Gholamhossein Esmaeili, Raisi's chief of staff and a member of the president's entourage, has further contributed to the confusion with his account. He revealed that he maintained contact with one of the helicopter's passengers for three to four hours after the crash. Esmaeili also noted that the weather conditions were favorable at the time of the crash.”

 

An op-ed article in French newspaper LeMonde explored how the death of the Iranian president should have no impact on the country's political course, since the Supreme Leader and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps hold most of the power. “It is not the president who ultimately makes the decisions, but the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic. In reality, Ali Khamenei holds the power. He is the one who selects and approves the regime's major orientations, including foreign policy. The president merely implements them. In other words, he is but the number two in the system. What's more, he has no control over many ministries, including the ministries of defense and intelligence, or over the appointment of the heads of radio and television, as well as the Revolutionary Guard Corps… The Revolutionary Guard Corps plays a major role in foreign policy through its local relays (such as Hezbollah in Lebanon). It has substantial room for maneuver in relation to the president, as emerged under the Rohani presidency. Of course, the president does play a role on the international stage, since, in theory, the Leader never leaves the country. The president takes part in major international conferences or goes to the United Nations in New York, where he may meet major foreign figures, like French President Macron in September 2022. But his role remains secondary.”

 

In contrast, an op-ed article in New York Times focussed on how the death could change the world. “The uncertainty ushered in by the death of Iran’s president, Ebrahim Raisi, in a helicopter crash, just weeks after an unprecedented exchange of military attacks with Israel, has brought a chilling question to mind: Is 2024 the year that Iran finally decides it can no longer take chances with its security and races to build a nuclear bomb?... Between the war in Gaza, a possible change in American leadership, and a domestic power vacuum that the I.R.G.C. could step into, it is not difficult to imagine a brief window in which Iran could pull out the stops and surprise the world by testing a nuclear device… from the perspective of a historian, the possibility of an Iranian rush for a bomb has never felt more real than it does today.”

 

China Military Drills Around Taiwan

 

The Chinese navy conducted large-scale military drills near Taiwan, heightening regional tensions. Taiwan called the two days of military exercises "strong punishment" for the self-ruled island's "separatist acts". The drills come three days after the inauguration of President William Lai, who called on China to stop threatening the island and accept the existence of its democracy. China sees Taiwan as a breakaway province that will eventually be under Beijing's control, but the island sees itself as distinct. Media coverage sought to explore specific reasons and implications.

 

An article in CNN examined how China’s military drills encircling Taiwan are designed to test its ability to seize power. “The drills are the largest in more than a year and come just days after Taiwan swore in its new president, Lai Ching-te, who is openly loathed by Beijing for championing the island’s sovereignty and distinct identity… Beijing has denounced Lai as a “dangerous separatist” and decried his inauguration speech on Monday, during which he called on China to cease its intimidation of Taiwan, which has grown much more pronounced under Chinese leader Xi Jinping… The PLA, which dwarfs Taipei’s outgunned military, kicked off the exercises on Thursday morning, sending warships and fighter jets around Taiwan and its outlying islands in what it called “a strong punishment for separatist acts of Taiwan independence forces.”… The PLA’s Eastern Theater Command said it was continuing the drills on both sides of the Taiwan island chain to “test the ability to jointly seize power, launch joint attacks and occupy key areas.”

 

An explainer article in The Guardian discussed the significance of the drills, especially in comparison with the previous ones. “The drills are the most significant since similar exercises were launched against Taiwan in August 2022 and April 2023…So far, the drills appear to be smaller and of a lower intensity compared with 2022 and 2023 in terms of level of activity. Taiwan’s defence ministry said China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) stayed outside the 24 nautical mile limit of Taiwan’s waters, and only carried out live fire exercises inland, not in the strait or at sea. It did not declare any no-fly zones… The 2022 drills included the firing of ballistic missiles over Taiwan’s main island into the sea, and analysts believed the 2023 drills showed an increased “war-like” capability, with marked improvement in the launching of fighter jets from aircraft carriers. This year the PLA navy has begun test sailing its third aircraft carrier, an addition to its fleet which analysts say will greatly increase China’s ability to maintain a strong presence across the Taiwan strait, South China Sea and East China Sea.”

 

Finally, an op-ed article in Eurasia Review argued how Indonesia needs to play the balancing act in these regional tensions. “As a key player, in Southeast Asia, Indonesia must evaluate this event from its perspective considering its policy on territorial disputes and the impact potential on its relations with China… For Indonesia, the biggest worry is the threat to regional stability posed by the Chinese military drills. The Taiwan Strait has long been a contentious area where China and Taiwan engage in confrontations and any escalation of military activities could affect neighboring countries such as Indonesia. Therefore Indonesia carefully must examine the situation and explore ways to maintain peace in the region… Indonesia’s stance on territorial disputes is based on the principles of resolving sovereignty and utilizing suitable methods and mechanisms for problem-solving. This vision influences Indonesia’s approach towards the present circumstances and its future relations with China. The international community ought to closely observe nations with comparable intentions and give careful consideration to the changing dynamics of this situation.”

Key insights and forecasts that show us what is to come

What Trump’s Return Might Mean for Global Order.

The allure, and the tragedy, of “America first” is that a superpower’s good fortune will shield it—temporarily—from the consequences of its own bad decision-making. In time, the United States, too, would rue the rise of an “America first” world—but only after so many other countries had come to rue it first.

Putin’s Ultraconservative Personnel Policy Is Hamstringing the Power Vertical.

There is a growing tumor in the system of personnel appointments that is now affecting the functioning of the Russian state, with some people even having their letters of resignation rejected.

South Africans Poised to Shake Up Their Governing Status Quo.

The provincial and national elections on May 29 come amid waning support for the ruling African National Congress thirty years after South Africa transitioned to democracy.

Will EU Laws Curtail Disinformation?

European tech law faces test to address interference, threats, and disinformation in 2024 elections. To prepare, the EU conducted a stress test of the Digital Services Act (DSA) mechanisms to address elections targeted by false and manipulated information, incitement, and attempts to suppress voices.

What Will the Return of David Cameron Mean for UK Foreign Policy?

If there is a single reason for the recognized weaknesses of British government in delivering what has been promised, it is the lack of expert knowledge in ministers and civil servants, who rotate between jobs often every year or two. This move, designed to fix problems elsewhere in the Cabinet, compounds that problem.

Will China Succeed in Creating an Asian Security Order?

China’s vision for the Asian security order has a strong emphasis on cooperative security, but Beijing, despite new initiatives, is not quite sure how to make it happen.

Why is Strengthening the African Union Police Crucial for Peacebuilding in Africa?

Amid rampant conflict and crime challenges, the African Union (AU) adopted Agenda 2063 (the Africa We Want) which includes aspirations for a peaceful and secure continent under the Pan-African vision of greater integration and political unity.

Big Picture TEST Metrics for the US, India and China, February 2022

India’s Manufacturing PMI was down to 55.5 in December 2021 from a tenth-month high of 57.6 in October, remaining in the growth territory, amid slower rise in sales and new orders, even as business sentiment was dampened by concerns surrounding supply-chain disruptions, COVID-19 and inflationary pressures. Exports and imports grew by 39% and 40% respectively as compared to the same period last year driven by rising international demand for Indian goods. No further rate cut was announced by the RBI during this month.

 

China’s Manufacturing PMI rose to 50.3 in December 2021 from 50.1 in November, slightly above market expectations of 50. The latest reading pointed to a modest growth rate in the manufacturing sector, which is expected to remain subdued at the start of the new year due to uncertainties brought by the pandemic outbreak in Xian and Omicron variant. Exports and imports grew by 21% and 20% respectively as compared to the same period last year.