PUBLISHED : Sunday, 16 August, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 16 August, 2009, 12:00am

by Bill Emmott
Penguin, HK$142

Grammarians may tsk at the use of 'between' instead of 'among' in Rivals: How the power struggle between China, India and Japan will shape our next decade. But that shouldn't put them off reading the book, by Bill Emmott, former editor-in-chief of The Economist. In analysing how those countries are competing with each other, he says it will be their relationships, rather than their links with the US, that will shape 21st- century geopolitics. Japan may seem the odd inclusion, having hobbled about since the bursting of its asset-inflated bubble and because of a greying population. But Emmott says the Japan that former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi passed on to his successors is one with confidence about its role in the world. Cognisant of the threat of China, it is anxious to involve India in regional affairs and to maintain a technological lead. Another country eager to use the subcontinent as ballast is the US, which forged closer strategic ties with the US-India nuclear agreement in 2008. Emmott, who eschews sensationalism for studied comment, offers nine recommendations for managing the rivalries. China, he says, should start with transparency.