Need for upgrading India-Europe relations

Context- Integrating Europe into India’s new strategic calculus must be a serious goal in 2021.

Three latest developments underline Delhi’s altering strategic perceptions of Europe-

  1. India’s assist for France’s membership of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA).
  • This accession reflects the determination of France, an Indian Ocean rim country, to become more involved in the Indo-Pacific region.
  1. India welcomed Germany and Netherlands in constructing a new geopolitical structure within the Indo-pacific.
  2. Emerging Security cooperation – The plans to work out a decade-long road map to rework the partnership between Delhi and London.

What were the Issues hindering India-Europe relations?

  1. The bipolar Cold War and the growing world versus the developed world dynamics prevented India from increasing cooperation with Europe in Post-WWII period.
  2. Whereas, Europe found China as an attractive commercial partner compared to India, the gap further widened with time.
  3. China also invested heavy political and diplomatic effort to make its place among European countries.

How geopolitics of the Indo-pacific affect Indian foreign policy?

  1. India is looking beyond the bipolar geopolitical competition between the US and China.
  • This is because of uncertain political trajectory of the US towards China.
  1. India has begun to shed the postcolonial mental block towards regional security cooperation with Europe.
  • The impact of China’s rise is being felt across the Indo-Pacific and the arising geopolitical instabilities are producing new partnerships between the affected powers.
  • India has now taken European powers as natural partners in constructing a durable balance of power in the Indo-Pacific.

How Europe in the Indo-Pacific can benefit India?

Although, European potential to project army power into the Indo-Pacific is limited. However together with Asian democracies, Europe can definitely make a distinction.

  • It may well mobilize large economic assets for sustainable development of regional infrastructure.
  • Wield political affect and leverage its important smooth power to form the Indo-pacific discourse.
  • Also, can increase India’s personal complete national power.

Therefore, a powerful coalition of Asian and European center powers should now be an indispensable factor of the geopolitics of the Indo-pacific.

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