Courtesy: Blaise Fernandes
Geographical Indication (GI) tags denote a good's specific physical origin. These are potential revenue-generators for India. Combining government support with its e-commerce network, India can empower MSMEs and women-led cottage industries to compete with large companies by building a strong GI ecosystem. The Make in India initiative and GI can together provide an impetus to social and economic growth in India.
Falling birth rates have become a concern for the Chinese regime. Add to it a shrinking external footprint, diminishing prospects for new foreign capital and domestic economic trouble in the tech and real estate sector, and China's vulnerabilities are clear. This signals danger for China's neighbours.
Courtesy: Druk Green Power Ltd
The Bay of Bengal is gaining relevance as a significant sub-region within the Indo-Pacific. Despite its importance to regional security, there is inadequate financial, physical, and energy connectivity. India must use its strategic and political pre-eminence and influence in the sub-region to pursue deeper connectivity with Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Nepal, and Sri Lanka and to block China's growing influence.
Courtesy: UAE Space Agency
After successfully developing Dubai and Abu Dhabi as aerotropoli or cities around an aviation hub the United Arab Emirates aims to become an astropolis, a hub of space tourism and human spaceflight. There is ample scope for UAE to cooperate on this with India, which is also its comprehensive strategic partner.
Courtesy: Samirsinh Dattopadhye Blog
Last month, at a hybrid meeting, the Foreign Ministers of India, the U.S., Israel, and the UAE set up a forum for quadrilateral cooperation. In the many issues discussed, the technology dimension shows the most potential for collaboration, with unique contributions of expertise and resources available from each country's tech hubs: Bengaluru, Silicon Valley, Dubai and Tel Aviv.
Courtesy: Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies
China is a clear winner in the physical connectivity stakes in the Bay of Bengal, and there's a reason a why: Its projects are connected to one another, from rail to road to port. While India also has some successful cross-border road and rail infrastructure projects, they are often an extension of an existing railway line or highway, not specific to the connectivity needs of the region. India can win by focussing instead on building infrastructure to maximise the vast maritime potential of the Bay of Bengal, especially the Andaman and Nicobar Islands that give India access to critical sea channels and trade routes.
Courtesy: Twitter |@GatewayHouseIND
On October 21, the Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla inaugurated the CCCS-Gateway House conference on "Leveraging China's Economy". In his keynote address, he traced the India-China trade imbalance, explained that the disturbed border changed equilibrium and noted that the "ability of India and China to work together will determine the Asian century".
The Bay of Bengal is a natural bridge between South and South-East Asia, which New Delhi seeks to optimise. But progress on India's Act East policy has been slow, creating a space for China's Belt and Road Initiative to step into. While India cannot match China’s cheque-book diplomacy, it can use its start-up industry to pursue a combination of physical, technological and financial projects to improve regional connectivity.
In 'A Grand Strategy: Countering China, Taming Technology, and Restoring the Media', a new book on China's technological ambitions, author William J. Holstein explains China's push to advance its technological prowess, exploring the link between technology, politics and economics in today's world. In this podcast, he tells us more about this connection, which has often been overlooked by the American media.
Courtesy: Gateway House
The Bay of Bengal is a bridge between the Indo-Pacific and the Indian Ocean, and with a population of 1.4 billion, an increasingly important economic zone in its own right. India has been slow to build regional connectivity. The space has been filled by China's Belt and Road Initiative projects, which have not always been beneficial for host countries. The region may be better off pursuing digital connectivity by enabling tech startups – areas of India’s strength. This research uses maps to explore the potential for energy, transport, and financial connectivity across the Bay of Bengal.