An editorial published in the Chinese daily Global Times has said that India cannot afford to boycott Chinese products amid growing calls for boycott of Chinese products on social media. The paper said India has poor infrastructure, underdeveloped manufacturing industry and is slow in making reforms. It further said that the 'Make in India' initiative launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has faced challenges because of low productivity, corruption and inconvenient transportation.
"What is the major problem that India is facing at the moment? The country lacks economic dynamics and makes slow progress with reform. India's tax system is also too complicated and India's manufacturing industry is still underdeveloped", said the op-ed published in the Global Times.
The country urged Indian politicians to not target Chinese market for soliciting votes in the upcoming General Elections. The op-ed cited Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's remarks in which he targeted PM Modi, saying: "Not a word comes out of his mouth when China acts against India".
#BoycottChineseProducts has trended on social media platforms, including Twitter after China blocked a proposal at the United Nations to designate Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist. The Chinese daily reacted to the hashtag, saying the trade deficit between India and China must be solved through consultancy and negotiation and not by shouting hollow slogans on Twitter as it will not improve India's strength.
The op-ed further added China has tried to balance the trade inequity as it increased its agricultural imports from India. "As a powerful neighbor of India, China has been trying to promote their relations. And it would be dangerous if candidates in the general election use the 'China threat theory' to hype nationalism and gain popularity. Sensationalizing China affairs may help Indian politicians' political careers, but it will not help improve India's economy, manufacturing or people's livelihoods", said Global Times.