Shaping India’s Response In A Global Hinge Moment
Source: The Hindu
Syllabus: GS 2-Issues related to India’s foreign relations and its interests.
Context: The Asia-Pacific region has become the new economic and political center with the rise of China, India and other countries like Indonesia, South Korea, Iran, Vietnam. It led to change in the Balance of Power (BoP) especially with the unpredictable “America First” attitude of United States and seeking of primacy by China in a world dominated by the U.S.
What should be India’s response to the changing conditions?
- Attaining Strategic autonomy:
- By pursuing its national interest: Pursuing the national interests should be a priority for India in an uncertain world where the priorities of other countries are being shaped by domestic interests.
- No credible results with Alliances: We cannot rely on alliances as seen in the case of Doklam crisis where no other country was ready to deal with India’s greatest strategic challenge — China.
- By bringing flexibility in Approach: With fast-changing BoP and relations of countries around India like that of Pakistan-China, China-Nepal, there is a need of creative diplomacy and flexibility to achieve strategic autonomy.
- Handling China:
- Handling the teething issues bilaterally: New mechanisms should be evolved bilaterally by the two sides keeping in view the core interests, problem areas and areas of cooperation of both the countries.
- Working with other Powers: India-China relations are of balancing cooperation and competition. To protect its interests in the region and the world, India need to work with other powers to handle China.
- Supporting Multi-polar World: With the withdrawal of U.S. from the world, it’s not clear as how it will deal with China. Thus, it would be beneficial for India to ensure Multi-Polar region.
- Availing Opportunities:
- Utilizing space: Conflicts between China and U.S are bound to bring opportunities for other countries. India could utilize the situation to grab opportunities like increasing its trade footprint with US under categories on which US has imposed tariffs on China and thus invite manufacturing firms seeking alternate destinations from China.
- Reduce import dependence: Currently India is dependent heavily on particular countries for energy, technology, essential goods etc. With utilizing the opportunities, India could diversify its trade and reduce its dependence.
- By coming out of strategic confusion: India need clarity on finalizing goals of India’s foreign policy as well as the means to achieve them.
To become developed country, India needs to adapt and manage its internal social and political stir-up. India needs more flexibility in its thinking and structures.