|Demand of the question
Introduction. What are middle powers?
Body. Importance of aligning with other middle powers for India.
Conclusion. Way forward.
In international relations, a middle power is a sovereign state that is neither a superpower nor a great power, but still has large or moderate influence and international recognition. Countries like Australia, Japan, India, Brazil, South Korea are important middle powers that are important for India in changing world order. These countries can play an important economic, strategic and political role in India’s rise as a major Asian and global power.
Importance of aligning with other middle powers for India:
- Political significance: At a time when the the United States’ global influence is declining and the world is moving towards an era of unpredictability, a new Middle Power coalition is the need of an hour. Deeper ties with middle powers like Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, and South Korea are important in changing global order. India also has a large diaspora in these countries that sends home around $35 billion in remittances annually.
- Global rise: Due to the rapid growth of China and the improving growth trajectories of numerous middle powers, collaborating with these countries can help India progress from being a South Asian power to an Asian and eventually global power. The Indian economy’s projected growth, along with the improved relationship with the United States, have enhanced India’s status with many of these powers.
- Energy requirements: Middle power countries are aimed at strengthening partnerships in a changing global scenario. Apart from strategic significance in a region the oil-rich countries like Saudi Arabia are critical for India’s massive energy requirements. Thus, strong ties with these countries are important.
- Countering China: To the east, South Korea, Japan, and Australia, all are middle powers that are deeply connected to China economically, but are treaty allies of the U.S. All are potentially useful economic and strategic partners for India. A partnership with these powers will create more balance in a region increasingly dominated by China. They can be critical to the U.S.-India Joint Strategic Vision for the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean Region and to India’s own strategic influence in Asia.
- Economic significance: The potential economic benefits of India’s partnerships with the middle powers are significant. India requires $1 trillion over the next decade to upgrade its infrastructure, for which it needs foreign direct investment. While Japan is already invested in the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project. An infrastructure build-out will also need investment and technology from such countries as South Korea and Canada.
- Nuclear energy: In the coming years, Japan will remain crucial to India for nuclear energy. India has concluded with Australia and Canada that will provide the uranium. Additionally, Japan, Australia, and Canada are members of the the Nuclear Suppliers Group. With deeper ties to these countries, India’s support base for membership to these regimes can widen.
- Defence: The middle powers will also be critical partners for India’s indigenous defence production and to reduce the country’s defence import bill. Although major powers Russia and the U.S. have been the biggest sources of defence exports and co-production, deals such with Israel on the Spike missile defence system will help unlock India’s defence manufacturing capabilities.
India needs to step up its partnerships with a host of countries on a number of issues. A strong ties with these countries is important if India has to rise and become a major power. These countries can help India’s economic growth and play an important role in emerging multipolar world.