NEW DELHI: China's economic rise has for decades been driven by an export-based economic model. The Asian giant is now the world's factory and exports just about anything that can be made in a factory. But there is one thing that even China cannot export - its political and development model.
"Although the Chinese model is truly effective, China does not have the power to promote its political system or the political tools to do so," read an editorial in Global Times. The newspaper is run by the Chinese government and is considered a mouthpiece for the thought processes of the Communist Party.
The admission comes even as China hardsells the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, which is an attempt to create a global market for its oversaturated construction sector while at the same time boosting its credit markets.
The OBOR project compounds a perception battle that China is already on the wrong side of. Countries across the world, especially China's neighbours, have stood witness to rising sabre-rattling and aggression.
"Every country is free to decide whether to learn from China's experience, and China supports diversity in global political systems... Noninterference is the cornerstone of China's diplomatic policy," Global Times claimed.
This claim however flies in the face of increasing discontent and suspicion of Chinese business and investment practices activity, especially in Africa.
Global Times's effort to spin China alleged unwillingness to impose itself on other countries comes at a time when Xi Jinping has been confirmed his country's President for a second term and his pet OBOR initiative has been inserted into the country's constitution. The piece also took a reactionary tone to a buzz in Western media outlets that Beijing is promoting its political model to other countries.
"In the past decades, the West has been enthusiastically promoting its so-called democratic system, not only through education and ideological brainwashing but also through "color revolutions" in emerging countries and, in extreme cases, by starting wars to "transform" Mideast countries. They think that since they have been "exporting models," China would do the same when it is powerful enough," the Global Times editorial said.