Tensions in West Asia have disrupted global shipping and revived interest in the Chennai-Vladivostok Eastern Maritime Corridor. Better freight and passenger connectivity between Southern India and Russia’s Far East will open new areas for bilateral cooperation such as the export of machinery, auto parts and engineering goods from India, and progressively integrate the economies of the two countries.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s two-day visit to Cairo on 24-25 June en route home after a successful state visit to the U.S., has highlighted the presence of the small but flourishing Indian community in Egypt. Comprising just 4,300 today, these Indians built businesses over the decades when Egypt was a British Protectorate, and after, and are important to the current upswing in the bilateral
The recent ASEAN Summit and East Asia Summits stressed the region's centrality and unity while also revealing its principal challenge: managing strategic contestation between the U.S. and China. The outcomes of both summits are reflective of ASEAN's diplomatic and strategic dilemmas in Southeast Asia and the Indo-Pacific.
The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation's growing importance is seen in the numerous new applicants waiting in line for membership. The 23rd SCO Summit hosted by India on July 4 saw progress in areas like digital transformation and economic cooperation. However, timidity in acting on foundational issues like anti-terrorism reflects the internal contradictions and tensions within member states - a continuing challenge for SCO.
Mexico has followed Prime Minister Modi’s visit to the U.S.,and sees an opportunity to partner with India. Geopolitically, as a global south country with shared interests in peace, security and sustainable development; regionally, as part of the supply chain and export gateway to the U.S.; strategically as a diplomatic platform with a pragmatic narrative that privileges mutual interests.
Mizoram is one of India's most beautiful states, whose people high literacy rates in India. Yet a lack of employment opportunities and inadequate infrastructure have significantly hindered its progress. The recent investments in connectivity projects and the tourism industry can help Mizoram transition into being a model for growth in India's North East.
Despite its natural advantages, the Bay of Bengal region lags economically, in part due to insufficient connectivity between the member nations. Improving financial connectivity between them is the first step to easing movement of goods, services and people. Greater financial collaboration also can help the region mitigate the impact of ongoing geopolitical upheavals that have caused food and energy prices to rise.
India’s Northeast is developing and getting close to its goal of being part of the Indian mainstream in connectivity and business – which is also critical for the success of India’s Act East Policy. For both goals, Bangladesh and Japan are invaluable partners and friends. The troika’s collaboration can be a model in the region.
The restoration of diplomatic ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia marks the end of a seven-year marathon of indirect confrontations and impasses involving a broad spectrum of actors. It allows both to harvest economic and political benefits. Most importantly, it confirms China’s status as a significant power with influence to unlock broad and complex international agreements.
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.