Even as India and Germany move ahead on energy cooperation, India-U.S. energy collaboration is stranded in the three key areas: nuclear power, shale gas, and solar energy. But with cheaper energy imports due to the fall in fossil fuel prices over the past 12 months, India can wait till it gets a better deal from the U.S.
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Although it is too soon to comprehensively analyse the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement of October 5, it is worth assessing what is known. Here are the facts, the controversies, the assessments, and the implications for countries that are not part of the agreement, especially India.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s U.S. visit from 26-30 September managed to attract a lot of attention from Indian-Americans. However, not a lot of business was done. The diaspora hopes that Modi visits the U.S. again next year but the focus must shift to showcasing India’s commitment towards progress of “Make in India”, self-reliance in energy and commitment towards elimination climate change.
On 1 October 2015, India submitted its INDCs to the UN. The ambitious goals set by the Narendra Modi government have no doubt silenced its critics. However, to achieve these lofty goals, India needs a paradigm shift in the kinds of business and development models it encourages.
The sanctions against Iran impacted the country’s oil, banking, aviation, and other sectors, and had a major humanitarian impact. But neither is armed attack a more suitable method in most instances to address allegedly recalcitrant states. What then is the middle ground? And can the UNSC assume a more proactive role in this context?
At a recent international seminar on BRICS Studies, in addition to the predictable themes such as building a multipolar world order and the One Belt One Road project, fresh ground was also covered, including the contours of the New Development Bank and the potential impact of the refugee crisis on BRICS countries.
It has been ten months since India and Germany signed an agreement to partner in developing three smart cities. The government now seriously needs to move beyond slogans and aspirations and start addressing the more pressing issues specific to smart city development. Then only will the Modi-Merkel diplomacy be viewed as a success at home.
Attaining higher GDP remains primary economic policy across the globe. However, the answer to achieving Sustainable Development Goals lies not in the crudity of economic numbers but in a holistic measure of both economic dynamism and social-environmental well-being.
While the closing of borders to refugees in Europe and West Asia could be interpreted as proof that national borders are more important now than ever, the sheer numbers of refugees make strengthening borders a severely inadequate solution.
The ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative announced by China last year is being actively implemented at the provincial level. A recent conference in Lianyungang, Jiangsu province, provided a glimpse of China’s multi-pronged strategy to harness various resources available to make OBOR a success.