This regional grouping, which was envisioned as a potential bridge between SAARC and ASEAN, turns 20 on June 6. It achieved very little until last year, when efforts to revive its original mission began quite by accident. It has the potential to make greater strides if member states adhere to their commitments.
Distinguished Fellow, Foreign Policy Studies Programme
Ambassador Rajiv Bhatia is a Distinguished Fellow, Foreign Policy Studies Programme at Gateway House. He is Chair of FICCI’s Core Group of Experts on BIMSTEC and its Task Force on the Blue Economy. He is a founding member of the Kalinga International Foundation. As Director General of the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) from 2012-15, he played a key role in strengthening India's Track-II research and outreach activities. During a 37-year innings in the Indian Foreign Service (IFS), he served as Ambassador to Myanmar and Mexico and as High Commissioner to Kenya and South Africa. He dealt with a part of South Asia, while posted as Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs. A prolific columnist, who has also written a critically acclaimed book, India-Myanmar Relations: Changing Contours (Routledge), he is a frequent speaker on foreign policy issues in India and abroad. He was Senior Visiting Research Fellow during 2011-13 at the Institute of South East Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore. He holds a master’s degree in political science from Allahabad University.
Myanmar, South East Asia, Indo-Pacific, South Asia, Indian Ocean, Africa, Regional Groupings, Indian Foreign Policy and Diplomacy
Last modified: December 21, 2017
This speech was delivered by Rajiv Bhatia, Distinguished Fellow, Foreign Policy Studies, Gateway House and Chair, FICCI Task Force on Blue Economy, at the Indian Ocean Rim Association Senior Officials Meeting in Jakarta
India views its ties with Malaysia as a core element of its Act East Policy, while the Malaysian leadership has taken note of India’s geopolitical importance and the many attractions of its market Both nations share a strong commitment to multiculturalism, democracy and inclusive development
Ambassador Rajiv Bhatia and Rajni Bakshi were part of a FICCI Task Force on Blue Economy. The task force released a report titled: Blue Economy Vision 2025: Harnessing Business Potential for India Inc and International Partners Executive Summary Blue Economy Read more
The Oceans Dialogue 2017, held last month in Thiruvananthapuram, devoted itself to aspects of ocean governance, such as security management, combating terrorism, depletion of marine resources and providing disaster relief, serving as a precursor to the UN General Assembly’s Ocean Conference in June
Myanmar’s first democratically elected government in decades completes a year this month, but it has not won widespread appreciation on many counts. Critics have highlighted the areas of darkness, but ignored its many achievements
Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India earlier this week produced many tangible outcomes, but left some thorny issues unresolved, which may test the two nations’ political and diplomatic capabilities
The past decade has witnessed an evolution of India-Africa relations especially since the implementation of Modi's Act East policy. There is also a growing realisation of the strategic and geopolitical value of the Indian Ocean region. This speech highlights the policies needed to strengthen India-Kenya relations and tap the wealth of resources in this Blue Economy.
This regional grouping of 10 nations, which observes its golden jubilee year in 2017, has come a long way from the Cold War era when it was founded, making a significant contribution to peace, security and prosperity. Now, its future prospects and “centrality” look uncertain amidst the region’s changing geopolitics
One is an advanced economy, the other an emerging one, and yet they share a striking complementarity of interests—from democracy and liberal values to a history of cordial relations. But two important economic agreements remain as chasms to be bridged