The renewed Cold War between the developed North and the deprived South is getting interesting with every passing day. The game changer is China’s active leadership as a plus factor. The showdown between Sun Tzu’s precepts of winning the war without fighting, and Machiavellian dicta of selfish power accumulation for security is getting narrower day by day. However, the background needs to be understood. Let me take you to the beginning of the Cold War era. Soon after the destruction of Europe and Japan after World War II, the only prosperous state of the time was the United States (US), primarily due to its geographic location far away from war zones. Hence, the US decided to fill the vacuum of leadership and lead the recovery of its like-minded states by launching a Marshall Plan. At the same time, decolonization was taking place in Asia and Africa, because the colonial powers were unable to control the popular independence movements in most of the countries. However, these countries were deliberately left poor, and dependent on their former colonial masters for the decades to come. Therefore, after years of injustices and unfairness, a Group of 77 (G77) from the developing countries was formed on June 15, 1964, with a demand for a “New International Economic Order (NIEO).” Because, by the late 1960s, it had become evident that post-WW-II international order was best suited for the global north and Bretton Woods Institutions – International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, were subservient to their former colonial masters, and hence would not care for the developing states in practical terms. Whereas, the purpose of establishing the G77 Forum was noble and had a popular appeal among the majority of nations, but failed to get the attention and desired objectives due to a lack of penetrative abilities through the arrogant and uncaring attitudes of the former masters, which was now led by the US. The developed world is just not willing to take the poor south along so that they remain dependent on them for a few more decades to come. After decades of struggle and failures, G77 nations finally found some refuge in the leadership of China, which is trying at all forums to take the developing nations along. The Chinese leadership perhaps believes in the term that I coined earlier “Productive Engagement” which means meaningful cooperation for mutual gains. President Xi Jinping’s initiative of “promoting its ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative for joint trade, infrastructure, and development projects with East Asian, Central Asian, and European countries” is now getting nearer to its core objectives. Also referred to as, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is fast creating hope among the developing nations with the upcoming infrastructure, energy, and industrial projects. These projects have created millions of jobs in several countries and have helped the developing nations to stand on their feet through cooperation, engagement, and togetherness. For this purpose, more than 10,000 Chinese companies are operating in Africa alone with an outlay of over 200 billion USD. This is a great service by China because Africa’s road and rail infrastructure were extremely poor and dilapidated due to the gross negligence of their colonial masters. Most of the projects relate to the much-needed communication systems that include “road transport, international rail and expressways, seaports, hydropower and carbon-based power, water supply and sanitation.” Given this background, it is essentially important to understand the significance of the recently concluded G77 Plus China Summit in Havana on September 15, 2023. There was a sharp contrast between the two Summits held within the space of two weeks: G20 in New Delhi and G77 in Havana. The common declaration of this year’s G20 reads, “We are determined to steer the world out of its current challenges and build a safer, stronger, more resilient, inclusive and healthier future for our people and the planet.” The statements indicate that it is designed to fox the poor nations and serve only the prosperous nations. Whereas, Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel stated, “We reaffirm our commitment to multilateralism, cooperation and development.” This language comes from the Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s philosophy of cooperation, shared knowledge, and perhaps productive engagement. The G77 now has a membership of 134 developing states plus China, and all they are demanding is “Science, Technology, and Innovation.” However, the developed world is just not willing to take the poor south along, so that they remain dependent on them for a few more decades to come, or perhaps forever. China’s philosophy of greater engagement with Asian and African countries may prove to be a game changer in the coming decades. Once the BRI projects are completed in most of the Asian and African states and the quality of life changes for the people, the indigenous talent would take over from the touted politicians of these states to unshackle their people from the old colonial masters. Perhaps, the process has begun in Francophone Africa, and China with Russia, may be able to bring a real change in the deprived region: Africa. The writer has authored three international books: “Nuclear Deterrence and Conflict Management Between India and Pakistan,” “South Asia Needs Hybrid Peace” and “Understanding Sun Tzu and the Art of Hybrid War.” The writer is the author of the book ‘Nuclear Deterrence and Conflict Management Between India and Pakistan’.