‘Issues of trust’ will rise in a ‘more difficult’ post-Covid world: S Jaishankar
External affairs minister S Jaishankar on Saturday predicted a post-Covid world where differences and issues of trust between countries will sharpen along with a rise in nationalistic approach leading to an “acceleration of a trend seen before” the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic.
The comments made by the external affairs minister came during the three day India Global Week 2020 event which is an attempt to trace India’s role and place in a post-Covid world order on all fronts, including economy. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had highlighted Indian government’s policy of self-reliance combined with compassion for the entire world, as a possible solution to challenges presented by exigencies like coronavirus, while delivering the opening address at the event on Friday.
Jaishankar said that a post-Covid world could pose several challenges including questions on “resilient supply chains”.
“I see a world where arguments will sharpen. I think there will be issues of trust which have been raised. There will be questions on resilient supply chains. It is going to be a more difficult world,” he was quoted as saying by ANI.
Jaishankar’s comments come close on the heels of a protracted border conflict with China which led to the killing of 20 Indian soldiers in clashes with the Chinese Army, along with an unspecified number of Chinese casualties. While the militaries of the two countries are now engaged in disengagement and deescalation from the conflict zones, the clashes have led to a popular sentiment of mistrust of India’s neighbour. Amid the heightened intension between the two countries, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had cautioned that the era of expansionism was over. The comment was widely interpreted to be directed at China.
Commenting on the ever evolving global dynamics, Jaishankar added that several trends seen before Covid 19 outbreak could become even stronger in the post-Covid world.
“A lot of trends that we saw before coronavirus, they could accelerate in the post Covid world. Even in response, in six months, for example, we have seen a lot of countries behaving more nationalistically,” ANI quoted Jaishankar as having said at the summit.
His comments come in the backdrop of friction seen on issues of trade and protectionism between the United States and several other countries including China and India. The US under President Donald Trump has also been accused of tightening immigration norms citing his government’s America First policy.