The main objective of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s (SCO) Energy Club, when Russia formed it, was to market its member states’ substantial oil and natural gas reserves. This map shows some of the important natural gas pipelines, originating from Russia and its neighbouring countries that are not members of the SCO. What can India do to secure supplies from these abundant but currently inaccessible natural gas reserves?
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The people of Afghanistan, torn by war, ethnic strife and geoeconomic contestation for their country’s rich natural resources, have paid by forsaking the assurances of daily life. But President Ashraf Ghani has shown them that normalcy can return and it is possible to hold regular elections. The author, a guest of the President and First Lady, travelled through the country in October 2018 to record her impressions of a resilient people who have reason to hope for a different future
The imperative for India to move away from its non-aligned posture is now, especially if it wants to be consequential in the global reordering underway. This will play out in the contention between the U.S. on one side, and China and Russia on the other.
Border regions and communities, some of them far from the heartland, constitute India’s first line of defence, a critical link in its national security. India’s 15,000-km borders touch seven neighbouring countries: Afghanistan (abutting Gilgit), Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, China, Bangladesh, Myanmar. Border regions have their own local dynamics, often shaped by subnational and religious identities that do not necessarily align neatly with political borders. Some also serve as flourishing corridors for illegal smuggling of goods and humans. Technology plays an important role in better protecting borders, but in some cases it has made borders obsolete. Despite their importance, border regions do not receive the full attention of the Indian mainstream, except when border tensions arise.
China’s ostensible intentions are to turn Gwadar port into a focal point of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor. But the geography of the region is a major stumbling block in the realisation of these ambitions and raises questions about the project’s underlying motives
Since 2017, the Punjab government has been cracking down on drug networks. The campaign has so far targeted small-time drug peddlers, but deep smuggling networks that cross international as well as state borders remain intact, posing a major national security threat
Regional groupings in South Asia have turned out to be like diligent pupils whose report cards show performance below par. The reasons for such an impasse range from political divergences to the economic downturn and the much talked about China factor that has many implications for India
India and the Trump administration are on a mutually appreciative footing. Two significant visits have given the bilateral a renewed focus and both countries are seeking ways to put their strategic and political convergence into practice
China has expanded its presence in the Indian Ocean Region. President Xi Jinping has abandoned Deng Xiaoping’s conciliatory posture for an aggressive, money-fuelled search for super power status
In yet another policy flip, U.S. President Trump announced a new strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia. While committing more troops to the region, he called out Pakistan as a 'safe harbour' for terrorism and called on India to do more. Ambassador Neelam Deo, Director at Gateway House, joins us to discuss the implications of this new direction and what it means for India.