Source: Shutterstock Courtesy: Shutterstock
10 June 2021

U.S. Defense Budget: Mixed signals for the Indo-Pacific

On 28 May 2021, the Biden administration submitted a much-delayed Defense Budget to Congress, asking for $715 billion for 2022, a 1.6% increase over the previous year’s $703.7 billion. This marginal increase highlights the U.S.’s shrinking capacities compared with China, which spends less than a third of the U.S. on defence. This Budget is focussed on challenges in the U.S.’s geographic vicinity, not the administration’s resolve to counter the threat of China from a position of strength.

India, IOR and blue economy Courtesy: Common Wealth
25 February 2021

India, IOR and the blue economy

The Indian Ocean Region (IOR) presents a unique opportunity to develop a Blue Economy, with security, sustainability and business profitability as its three pillars. An IOR Defence Ministers' Conclave held on 4 February provided a platform to discuss regional cooperation, linking development with defence, and emphasized India's pivotal position within the IOR.

US Navy Courtesy: Twitter
24 December 2020

Will 1st Fleet trump Biden’s Asia-Pacific?

The U.S. Navy Secretary, Kenneth Braithwaite, visited India on 17 Dec 2020. Will this year-end visit culminate in the reactivation of the First Fleet under the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command? The First Fleet, is likely to be an expeditionary fleet - one without a shore-based headquarters and assigned primary responsibility for the Indian Ocean and parts of Pacific Ocean bordering South Asia. Its reactivation will emphasise the strategic importance of this region. It will also relieve the burden of the U.S. Navy's 7th Fleet headquartered in Japan, that is deployed for operations in this vast oceanic space.

41608961145_bcfb0f1515_o Courtesy: MEA Flickr
26 February 2019

Indo-Pacific, the contested theatre

The key global powers are redefining their roles in the Indo-Pacific to promote national interest. China’s rise and increased activism in South Asia and the Indian Ocean region is an uncontested reality even as Asian countries worry about the new cold war in which the U.S. and China are locked. The Quadrilateral Dialogue has reemerged to prevent a unipolar Asia — these are some of the trends unfolding in this arena

46658837911_46b856f8ef_o Courtesy: MEA Flickr
10 January 2019

India, Norway and the Blue Economy

Norwegian prime minister Erna Solberg’s visit to India earlier this week had a central focus: strengthening economic and technological cooperation in the Blue Economy. This is an area in which her country has considerable expertise and with which Indian business needs to collaborate in managing industries, such as oil, shipping, fisheries and aquaculture in a ‘green’ way

b52-bomber-over-ocean-600x400 Courtesy: Competitive India
29 November 2018

Maritime security: a decade after 26/11

Ten years after the 26/11 terror attack, India’s maritime security is much stronger, with better inter-agency coordination and improved security structure. The Indian Navy was made responsible for maritime security overall, but no fool-proof and unambiguous command and control structure exists as yet.

NTNU_blacksmokers_800x300 Courtesy: NTNU
22 November 2018

Oceanic Industry 4.0

The emergence of the Fourth Industrial Revolution depends on the availability of rare- earth minerals, which occur extensively on the ocean floor of the Indo-Pacific. The technology to exploit this is available only to some countries currently: the global agreement on this must be fair and safeguard India’s future interests, says the author of this blog