India’s foreign policy concerns

Context: Analysing the possible outcomes of the US foreign policy under new president Biden that will concern India

Background- India-US relation during Trump years

  • Defence cooperation: India signed all the ‘foundational’ agreements with America and bought billions of dollars’ worth of military hardware from them.
  • Strategic Autonomy: India resisted converting the Quad into a military or strategic grouping. The External Affairs Minister even once stated that India will not join any military alliance.

Two US Foreign policy issues which are of great concern for India

West Asia policy of US:

  • What policy President-elect Joe Biden will adopt on the questions of West Asia peace plans and the nuclear deal with Iran-the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is a huge concern of India.
  • India has a huge stake in that region. For example, remittance, energy security, Largest Indian immigrants.
  • Sanctions on Iran has also limited our ability to buy Iranian oil, and sell our pharma and other goods.
  • If Biden administration choses to reduce tension with Iran it will significantly help India to invest openly in oil and other infra projects in Iran, including the rail project in which Indian Railways Construction Ltd has been interested.

China Policy of US:

  • If Biden adopts a more conciliatory approach towards China, India will be left alone in confronting with China.
  • On matter related to QUAD, it is highly likely that India will be forced to agree to some form of military alliance in future given the fact that all the other three countries are already in strategic alliance with one another.
  • With India not in a position to deal with China on its own and we need external support to protect our territorial integrity.
  • Even Jawaharlal Nehru, the architect of non-alignment, sought the help from America during the war with China in 1962.
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