"Asia and Africa today"
- is a scientificl monthly journal (in Russian)
of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Included in Russian Science Citation Index on
WoS platform, and EBSCO Publishing.
ISSN 0321-5075
Published since July 1957.

 

 "Asia and Africa today" № 4 2015

 

 

Azia&Afrika 04-2015

 

 Top Problem

RUSSIA AND EGYPT: PROSPECTS ARE GOOD, BUT IT WILL TAKE TIME FOR THEIR IMPLEMENTATION by A.M.Vasiliev, Academician, Director, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) and D.I.Vinitsky, our Staff correspondent in Egypt
Keywords: Egypt, Russia, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Vladimir Putin’s visit, the relationship
Russia and Egypt are linked by complex historical political, economic relations and diverse humanitarian ties. The most important event in the development of Russian- Egyptian relations was the visit of the President V.V.Putin held early in February this year. It marked a new stage in relations between the two countries, ambitious phase of hope on the part of Cairo and optimistic estimates from Moscow.
Both the Egyptian and Russian experts agree: Putin’s visit to Egypt fully meets the aspirations of both countries and aims to strengthen cooperation. However, they emphasize that this process will take time, labor and capital, as well as readiness to resist external political pressure.

EU-AFRICA: TIME TO CHANGE PRIORITIES by I.L.Lileyev, PhD (Political Science), Institute for African Studies
Keywords: European Union, international relations, aid to Africa, peacekeeping
As the years go by relations between the European Union and Africa have gained new features and a new quality.They became more businesslike and mote concrete. In2000 at the 36th Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in Algiers ambitious program «New Partnership for Africa’s Development» (NEPAD) was adopted. In the years since that historic event many African countries with the help of European partners have achieved significant growth of gross domestic product (GDP). The growth rate of African economies is characterized today by steady positive dynamics.
Along with apparent development complexities the continent is becoming increasingly attractive for foreign investors. Meanwhile, the pattern of trade and economic relations with its Western partners its being modifies. The principles of giving aid to African states by the European Union and other highly-developed countries of “the North” are changing too, which is very important because it is just those principles for many years were a sort of a “cornerstone” of bilateral and multilateral relations between them. Africa and Europe choose now to meet the current challenges jointly.

CHINA. FURTHER DEVELOPMENT OF “EXPANSION ABROAD” STRATEGY by T.G.Teren- tyeva, Institute of the Far East, RAS
Keywords: export of the capital, investments, accumulated direct investments, construction contracts, leasing
This article is about the next steps of Chinese “Expansion abroad” strategy, which became possible and successful since 2001 after receiving official membership in WTO. Its actual status is described. The strategy remains one of the key priorities of external economic affairs policy of China, every time confirmed by congresses and plenums of Central Committee of Chinese Communist Party (CC CCP). Special attention is paid to the Decree, made as aresult of the 3-d plenum of CC CCP of the 18th convocation (November 2013). This Decree is considered as the “Program Document” of the new development history until 2020 in China. Detailed review is done of the Decree’s article related to main execution directions of “Expansion abroad” strategy.

 

 Policy, Economy

AFRICA AS AN OBJECT OF INVESTMENTS by G.E.Roshchin, Dr.Sc. (Economics), Institute for African Studies
Keywords: Africa, direct foreign investments, transnational corporations (TNC), reform strategy, economic development, technical modernization
The article deals with the problem of attractiveness of Africa as an object of foreign investments. Analyzed gains and all kinds of costs of using the strategy of industrialization depended on participation of African states in international production networks of TNC. Considerable attention is paid to regional investment flows that are becoming an essential source of capital for many African states.
The author is analyzing the measures taken by these states to liberalize foreign investments regulation mode and special measures to promote the investors that include tax, customs, financial and other exemptions.

CHRISTIANITY IN BURMA/MYANMAR by A.A.Simoniya, PhD (Economics), Institute of Oriental Studies, RAS
Keywords: Burma/Myanmar, religion, Christianity, Roman Catholic Church, Protestantism (Baptism), Buddhism, Pope Francis, beatification
The author examines a rather poorly researched topic of Christianity in predominantly Buddhist country. Christianity is practiced by no more than 5% of the population primarily among the Kachin, the Chin, the Kayin (Karen) because of missionary work in their respective areas. About 2/3 of the country’s Christians are Protestants, Baptists in particular, and another 1/3 are Catholics. The Roman Catholic was first brought to Burma’s shores by Portuguese sailors in 1511, three centuries later the first American Baptist missionaries arrived to Burma.
Nowadays the Roman Catholic Church is paying close attention to Asian countries where Catholics face certain difficulties. The Pope Francis’s increased attention to Myanmar reflects his fondness for small churches which meet challenges.

MALAWI. POPULATION GROWTH AND ITS IMPACT ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE COUNTRY by Yu.V.Zinkina, PhD (History), Institute for African Studies
Keywords: Tropical Africa, Malawi, fertility, demography
The birth rate in most countries of tropical Africa is extremely high (more than 5 children per woman). Especially rapid population growth is observed in Malawi, a small country in south-east Africa (area less than the Vologda region in Russia), the population of which, according to UN projections, should come close to 100 million people by the end of the century.
This rapid population growth will pose a serious burden on the economy, social infrastructure, and could threaten political stability

TANZANIA. MUTUAL ASSISTANCE IN URBAN COMMUNITIES by O.V.Ivanchenko, D.A.Zelenova, PhD (Political Sciences) and P.A.Popov, Institute for African Studies
Keywords: Tanzania, urban communities, uswahilini, mutual aid practices
The authors analyze the results of a field study conducted in September 2013 in Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) within the framework of a project «Practice of mutual aid in the African metropolis, by giving an example of Johannesburg and Dar es Salaam». The authors examine the contemporary forms of mutual aid, common among residents of traditional African quarters, - uswahilini (Sw. - «Quarter for Africans» or literally - «the place of Swahili people»), the structure of groups covered by it, and compare it with the state practice of microcredit vikoba, has become popular in Dar es Salaam in the recent years.
A crucial feature of urban mutual aid practices, as the example of Dar es Salaam demonstrates, is their rapid transformation, which is understandable, since they reflect the changes taking place in the city. For their research the authors have chosen two Dar-es-Salaam districts with the most interesting social composition and geography of settlement: Gongo la Mboto and Mbagala, both of which are perceived as uswahilini districts.

 

 From Our Staff Correspondent

24-th AFRICAN UNION SUMMIT by V.N.Nem- chenko, our Staff correspondent in Ghana
Keywords: African Union, summit, armed conflict, elections, Ebola fever
On 30-31 January the 24th Session of the African Union was held in Addis Ababa. Its participants discussed the AU program of development and cooperation “Agenda 2063”. The African leaders endorsed the plan of the UA activity, including the peacekeeping operations for settling armed conflicts to be realized together with the UN. The AU summit approved formation of international 7500 counter terrorist contingent for fighting against Boko Haram. The African Union founded the African Centre for Disease Control and the International fund to stop the spread of this dangerous fever.

 

 Scientific Life

CRISIS IN THE ARAB WORLD: NEW CHALLENGES by K.V.Meshcherina, Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies
Keywords: crisis in the Arab countries, Middle East, North Africa, Institute for African Studies
For nearly four years the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has been shaken the next «round» of the crisis. Clashes on ethnic and religious grounds don’t stop, exacerbated by opposition of various armed groups.
Analysis of these dramatic events and issues related to their reconciliation was devoted III conference held 26-27 November 2014 in the Institute for African Studies RAS (previous conferences were held earlier in May 2011 and June2013). There were more than 20 reports; discussed issues related to the exacerbation of socio-economic, political and ethno-religious conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa and a new level of these conflicts; the impact of the crisis events on the situation in the other African countries; the further development of the region after the «Arab Spring».

GENDER STUDIES OF SCHOLARS OF THE INSTITUTE OF ORIENTAL STUDIES AND OF THE INSTITUTE FOR AFRICAN STUDIES by N.L.Krylova, Dr.Sc. (History), Institute for African Studies
Keywords: Oriental studies, African studies, gender studies, gender inequality, social emancipation, mixed marriages
The article presents the analytical review of the academic events organized in recent years jointly by the specialists in the Oriental and African studies focusing on the gender problems. The events took place in the Institute for African Studies and the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences. These academic discussions proved the sociopolitical and academic timeliness of the activity of such academic alliances.

 

 Post-Graduate Column

APEC AS A NEW MODEL OF INTEGRATION by Kuboon Charumanee (Thailand), Post-gradute student, Saint-Petersburg State University
Keywords: integration, Asia-Pacific free trade zone, economic cooperation, South-East Asia, open regionalism, «soft» law
The article presents an overview of the integration processes in the Asia-Pacific region, by considering the Asian model of economic integration citing as an example the Forum of the Asia-Pacific economic cooperation.
The formation of the Forum is discussed as one of the models of economic integration. The author pays particular attention to key aspects of the APEC summits, which laid the foundations of the Asian model of economic integration: specific features of this model (the policy of «open regionalism»), including, for example, the principle of Association (not of the states, but of the economies), its unique management mechanisms (the practice of «soft laws») and the principle of integration «from below».
The assessment of the prospects for further development of cooperation of the Asia-Pacific region is given. Development cooperation APEC economies considered in the context of the current geopolitical and geo-political realities.

 

 Traditions, Customs, Morals

STUDENT ASSOCIATIONS IN THE JAPANESE CULTURAL SPACE by R.V.Dorokhina, PhD (Philosophy), Voronezh State University of Architecture and Civil Engineering
Keywords: Japan, clubs, corporations, samurai, universities, students
This article discusses the theme of creation of the student associations and its functioning in the Japanese cultural environment. The stages of the formation of student clubs as a transition from samurai to modern corporate ethics are considered. A parallel between the activities of the Western and Japanese student corporations are drawn. The similarities and differences in student organizations of the West and Japan in the rites of initiation and consecution to ethical standards and values are shown.

 

 History Pages

THE CENTENARY OF THE AGREEMENT-1915 BETWEEN RUSSIA, MONGOLIA AND CHINA by S.L.Kuzmin, PhD (Biology), Institute of Oriental Studies
Keywords: Russia, Mongolia, China, international law, treaties, independence
The history of concluding of the 1915 Agreement between the Russian Empire, the State of Mongolia and the Republic of China in Kyakhta is discussed. Brief data on proclamation in 1911 of the Mongolian independence, agreements of 1912 and 1913 and their value for understanding of the Mongolia’s international status are provided. Main clauses of the 1915Agreement are given, as well as the explanations of the Russian understanding of the autonomous status of Mongolia by B.E.Nolde, the Director of the Law Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
Nolde’s comments asserted that in accordance with the state law and international law criteria is an independent state. At the same time, since China possessed the suzerain right with respect to Mongolia, its territory is the territory of both Mongolia and China.

 

 Culture, Literature, Art

GEORGE ROERICH ABOUT THE ART OF THE ANIMAL STYLE AMONG THE NOMADS OF NORTHERN TIBET by A.M.Shustova, PhD (Philosophy), Institute of Oriental Studies
Keywords: George Roerich, animal style of art, nomads in Tibet, pre-Buddhist period of history
George Roerich (1902-1960), a prominent Russian orientalist, tibetologist, author of “Tibetan Paintings”, “The Animal Style among the Nomads of Northern Tibet”, “Trails to Inmost Asia”, “History of Central Asia”, Tibetan-Russian- English Dictionary with Sanskrit parallels. This article considers his book “The Animal Style among the Nomads of Northern Tibet”, the history of its creation and its main ideas. This book has become an important event in the world academic life and set a standard for studies in Euro-Asian history.

COLOMBO AND GALLE REVISITED: FOLLOWING IN THE TRACKS OF A.M. and L.A.MEERWARTH’S EXPEDITION by I.Yu.Kotin, Dr.Sc. (History), Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (The Kunstkamera)
Keywords: Ceylon (Sri-Lankan) expedition of A.M. and L.A.Meerwarth, Colombo, Galle
In the article the attempt is made to review the results of the ethnographic expedition to Colombo and Galle in 1913 made by Russian specialists in Indian culture A.M.Meerwarth and his wife L.A.Meerwath. It also tells the story of revisiting of Colombo and Galle by Russian ethnologists a century later.

SAYING GOOD BYE TO A SLAV INDOLOGIST by L.I.Medvedko, Dr.Sc. (History), Institute of Oriental Studies
The article is written in memory of the recently deceased famous Russian indologist Elena Kalinnikova (1929-2014), PhD (Philology), senior researcher of the Institute of Oriental studies, who laid the foundation of the contemporary studies in Russia in the field of Indian Literature in English. Her books Indian Literature in English, Rasipuram Krishnaswami Narayan, Mulk Raj Anand, Salman Rushdie Phenomenon and others are well known among Oriental studies researchers in Russia and abroad. Some of her books were translated into English and published in India. Her latest work «The Phenomenon. Salman Rushdie» was the first book in Russian, which told readers about the world-famous Indian English writer Salman Rushdie.
The article written by the author (husband of the late Elena), contains a brief history of life and creative work of this outstanding scientist-indologist.

 

 Book Review

«PEOPLE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN KIFANGONDO» by A.A.Tokarev, PhD (History), Institute for African Studies
The Soviet Union was one of the first countries to support the liberation struggle of the peoples of the Portuguese colonies for independence and together with some other states supplied anti-colonial forces in Angola with political, economic, military and moral support during all the years of their struggle.
One of the most reliable sources, evidence of this support is a the recently published book by S.A.Kolomnin «Russian trail under Kifangondo» (Moscow, 2014, 128 p.). The author is a military journalist, who took direct participation in military and technical assistance to Angola in 1977-1978. He has written numerous publications on the war in Angola in
1975-1991.

 

* Summary