India is a young country and an old civilization. It began its new life 75 years ago with enormous equity stemming from its unique freedom struggle. A maturing foreign policy now enables it to move smoothly from being the leader of the ‘have-nots’; to being a responsible member of the group that manages world affairs.
China’s economic troubles may make it more belligerent against its neighbours. The over-the-top rhetoric and threats on U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan may be a precursor to more such behaviour in the future.
India has done considerable groundwork to turn into a blue economy nation through its maritime policies and active support of the Indian Ocean Rim Association. The time is right for the country to now focus on blue diplomacy, with an emphasis on maritime security and sustainable, equitable harnessing of maritime resources.
China has established a dominant presence in the Indo-Pacific through exploitative economic engagements. This has destabilised smaller nations in the region and made them dependent on Chinese support. For a free and open Indo-Pacific, India must press its advantage in human and economic capacity building.
The Indian diaspora has played a significant role in deepening the country's engagement with the Indo-Pacific nations. India can leverage this soft diplomacy to play a constructive role in the region.
The Quad Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, held in Melbourne on February 11, revealed an ambitious plan for economic and developmental affairs, beyond the security concerns posed by China. Despite differing approaches towards Myanmar and Ukraine, the Quad countries are strengthening their cooperation while maintaining strategic autonomy.
The Indo-Pacific has become an important part of global geopolitics in the recent past, with several great powers implementing concerted Indo-Pacific policies to create economic, social and security linkages with the region. India can use its development experience and futuristic technology to secure stability and prosperity. This compendium of essays explores the comprehensive role that India can play in the Indo-Pacific, from energy and environment, to trade, security, technology and a vibrant diaspora.
Nine great powers and a number of important multilaterals have vested interests in the Indo-Pacific. Given the U.S.-China standoff in the region, the role of new groupings like the Quad and AUKUS is significant. The time is ripe for India to use its position in the region, and convert its humanitarian duties into economic and strategic opportunities in 2022.
The India-Russia leaders’ summit and ministerial meetings in New Delhi on Dec. 6, scored big. Differences were set aside to make transformative progress in defence, fintech and connectivity among other sectors, commencing a new era of India-Russia relations fit for the 21st century.
The two nations should take a clear-eyed review of the current state of their ties with an emphasis on intensifying dialogue in the new sectors.