The rise of Indian tycoon Gautam Adani over the past few years has been tied to India’s rapid growth and influence against the backdrop of a sluggish global economy. India’s strategic position is rapidly coming to the fore as the United States shifts its global strategic focus to the Indo-Pacific region in response to the CCP threat.
According to the latest Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Adani is the world’s second-richest man after Tesla founder Elon Musk, with a net worth of $143 billion. He made headlines on his Sept. 16 by beating out his Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who currently holds his third position in the index.
While many of the world’s top billionaires have seen their fortunes fall dramatically over the past year, Adani’s fortune has nearly doubled, jumping to $71.6 billion. In fact, among the world’s top billionaires, he’s the only one whose wealth hasn’t diminished.
Adani, India Rise Together
Some analysts believe Adani’s 10-fold increase in wealth is closely tied to his support for infrastructure and green energy development programs pushed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
At the same time, Adani has played a key role in strengthening India’s global strategic importance. This includes his $1.18 billion bid in July to privatize Haifa, Israel’s most important port, and China’s plans to take full control of the port. was blocked.
In 2021, the China-controlled Shanghai International Port Group will build a container terminal across Haifa Port. The Haifa Bayport Terminal was intended to serve as an important Belt and Road node for the Chinese Communist Party and a strategic presence in the Mediterranean.
When it comes to port investments, Adani has made no secret of strategic considerations for India. on July 15th Tweet, he wrote: Of immeasurable strategic and historical significance for both countries! ”
Adani’s company boomed thanks to the oil crisis
Over the past year, there has been a surge in assets across all Adani companies, especially those in the energy sector that benefited from the sharp rise in global oil and gas prices. Additionally, his energy company outperformed the MSCI World Energy Index 2022 with a total return of 36%.
Of these, Adani Green Energy and Adani Total Gas both trade at price-to-earnings ratios (P/E) above 750, while the main Adani group companies, Adani Enterprises and Adani Transmission, trade at multiples. Over 400.
This rapid growth in wealth has not only made Adani the first Asian to enter the top three list of the world’s richest people, but it has also made him one of India’s former billionaires, Mukesh Ambani and China’s richest man, Zhong Zhong. Adani’s net worth increased by $50 billion in 2021, while Ambani’s fortune increased by $21.8 billion. For many years, Ambani was the only Asian to be among the top 10 richest people in the world.
Investing in India’s growth amid global economic slowdown
Adani and Ambani are backing Prime Minister Modi’s new energy development strategy, with Adani planning to invest $70 billion and Ambani’s investment reaching $75 billion. His two big conglomerates, which control India’s key sectors such as power, coal, natural gas, ports, digital technology services, oil exploration, finance, biotechnology and telecommunications, are vital to India’s rapid economic development. .
The Indian government expects the country’s economy to grow by more than 7% this year, more than double the global growth forecast. According to the latest World Bank forecasts, the war between Russia and Ukraine, rising global energy prices, and stringent lockdowns due to the pandemic in China will push global growth to just 2.9% this year.
In China, the latest wave of the pandemic has put 20% of the population on lockdown. Nomura Securities recently lowered its forecast for China’s GDP growth this year to 2.7%. Earlier, Goldman Sachs cut its growth forecast for China to 3.0% from 3.3%.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, China’s GDP grew by just 2.5% in the first half, well below the official 5.5% growth target.
Haifa Port Purchase Blocks CCP in Middle East
In late July, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited (APSEZ), together with Israel’s Gadot Group, announced a $1.18 billion investment to privatize Israel’s Haifa Port, in which Adani currently owns a 70% stake. We beat our competitors in bidding.
Haifa Port handles nearly half of Israel’s container cargo and straddles the exit of the nearby Israeli Naval Base. It is also a frequent port of call for the United States Sixth Fleet, making it an important port for both Israel and the United States.
China’s Bayport Terminal, across from Haifa Port, will open in September 2021. The administration sees the port as one of the key ports along the Mediterranean coast for the Belt and Road Initiative, and he has invested $1.7 billion in the project.
Adani’s acquisition also follows an initiative to co-produce weapons for Israel in India, with Adani being its first partner in manufacturing small arms and later expanding into missiles and drones.
India, I2U2 partners take on Belt and Road
The deal comes just days after US President Joe Biden’s visit to the Middle East for I2U2 online summits with India, Israel and the United Arab Emirates. The Shikoku Economic Forum is seen as part of the US strategy to counter the Chinese Communist Party’s Belt and Road initiative in the Middle East.
The I2U2 block is seen as a complement to US influence in the Middle East and is consistent with India’s strategic interests. In February, India and the United Arab Emirates signed a free trade agreement. India is currently negotiating a free trade agreement with Israel.
US urges India to cut off from China
Jonathan Schanzer is senior vice president of research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), a research organization based in Washington, DC.quoted in Jewish News SyndicateSchanzer says the US has been urging Israel to disconnect from China for the past two years.
“The US is concerned because the high-end technology that Israel produces is very attractive to China,” Schanzer said. Israel’s trade with China is lucrative, now worth $17 billion, but he said Israel “will increasingly need to look to India as an alternative because of pressure from the United States.” added.
At a Heritage Foundation seminar in Washington on Aug. 25, Admiral Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations, said India will become a strategic partner of the United States by playing a key role in countering the Chinese Communist Party. said it could be.
“We cannot think of China through the lens of the Indo-Pacific. We must look at the Indian Ocean, the Belt and Road, now the global economic connective tissue,” Gilday said.
Importance of India in Indo-Pacific Strategy
India already plays a key role in deterring the Chinese Communist Party in the Indo-Pacific. For example, in early August, the Chinese military aerospace research vessel Yuan Wang 5, widely believed to be a spy ship, was allowed to dock at Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port. D.The Indian government delayed the docking for several days over concerns that it might collect Indian military intelligence.
Since April of this year, Sri Lanka has been in an economic and political crisis that some attribute to China’s debt trap diplomacy. India has provided nearly $4 billion in aid to Sri Lanka in recent months to help Sri Lanka emerge from its hardships.
India is also helping Bangladesh to reduce its dependence on the Chinese Communist Party. Bangladesh, India’s southeastern neighbor, owes about $4 billion to China through its participation in the Belt and Road Initiative.
Frank Shih, a professor of business administration at the University of South Carolina Aiken, told the Epoch Times, “India’s strategic position comes to the fore after the United States shifts its strategic focus to the Indo-Pacific region, primarily targeting the Chinese Communist Party. came out,” he said. “India also plays a very important role in the quadruple alliance between the United States, Japan, India and Australia.”
China’s military expansion and aggressive movements in the South China Sea pose a threat to all its neighbors in the region. Xie said India is also aggressively expanding its naval and strategic missile forces to counter this threat.The country has a full set of strategic missiles and nuclear weapons, recently commissioned First domestic aircraft carrier.
Xie believes India can play a key role in controlling parts of the Indian Ocean and South China Sea, as does the United States.
Moreover, India’s population is expected to reach 1.4 billion and soon overtake China’s population.
“Coupled with population growth, the economy is growing so fast that many companies in the industrial chain will move their factories and industrial chains to India, which will hit the Chinese Communist Party hard economically. ‘ said Xie. .
India is also more wary of the Chinese Communist Party’s infiltration than other democracies. Last year, the Indian government banned 59 Chinese mobile applications. The two countries have been on high alert since a small but deadly clash between India and China two years ago.
Epoch Times reporter Ellen Wang contributed to this report.