“It has been said that arguing against globalization is like arguing against the laws of gravity.”
– Kofi Annan (in 2000-01)
How common have student or immigrant deaths by hands of radical gunmen become? Recent shooting of an Indian techie in US brings to light the racial tension and pressure situations faced by students as well as immigrants. Such and many more recent incidences bring forth a persistent question of whether people can move and live freely in this age of globalization. Though the world practiced globalization since ancient times, it was the western nations that encouraged the concept in modern times. Also, even though India opened its markets a bit later than other developed western nations i.e. in 1991, about 25 years back, the other so called ‘Champions of Globalization’ are not in reality ready for globalization. So the larger question still remains – how ready is the world for true globalization?
We are hardly ready –
1. True globalization is more of a myth than reality. And the blame is put on impracticality and difficulty of implementing certain reforms.
2. This is evident from the fact that most of the nations especially those who are advocating globalization, are looking at it narrowly. In their conservative mindset they want globalization to remain limited to trade only.
3. Globalization is integration of economy as well as movement of people and dissemination of knowledge. But most of them want to stop at easiness of trade and knowledge sharing. But that is not true globalization.
4. There are various restrictions on migration of people from one nation to other. This again is against the spirit of globalization. By restricting movement of people, an important aspect of globalization is completely ignored.
5. Racial conflicts, killing immigrants, student deaths due to racial tension, etc. are some examples of how intolerant citizens are becoming of immigrants and outside people.
6. Even in globalization of trade, nations are not 100% transparent and open. Each of them focuses on their needs and they have protectionist policies for themselves with no regard to global economic integration. So this makes the talk of globalization just a farce and a cover for fulfilling one’s own need.
We have a solid start –
1. It is cynical to judge the entire world based on actions of few.
2. There have been brilliant strides in the direction of globalization, the most important being the effect one nation has on economy of other nation. For e.g. when Rare earth mineral prices rise in China, it affects electronics industry all over the world.
3. There are more than 6 billion people in the world and globalization changes everyone’s life. So it is bound to take time to truly implement it and show its results.
4. Globalization cannot be achieved in an instant or in matter of few years. It needs continuous efforts to integrate the ever changing economy and the dynamic workforce and cache of knowledge.
5. One needs to see that there are many incidences that highlight globalization. For e.g. Millions of students leave their own nation to study in other countries all over the globe. Also, despite restrictions millions are allowed in a nation to come and work for a living.
6. Though there are restrictions, many are allowed. Also the restrictions are for safeguarding people who already are there and are struggling or for the weaker sections of the society.
7. There have been numerous instances of racial violence and deportation of immigrants, but the violence should not cast a doubt on readiness to accept globalization. The violence is example and result of instability of some people and not the whole world.
8. Globalization is basically aimed at fulfilling everyone’s need. So during crisis everyone tries to be protective but this is just survival and has nothing to do with non-acceptance of or non-readiness for globalization.
We can see that there are compelling reasons for both the viewpoints but there is no denying that globalization is imminent. Violent incidences happen within a nation against the nation’s citizens too. That should not cast a doubt over good intentions of the entire world. It is mostly like what Kofi Annan said that there is no point in fighting globalization just like there is no point in fighting gravity.