Being blessed with a good neighborhood is the best thing that you can have, but if not then you have to create one. From the intense standoff between India and China to some bold steps of not to be a part of RCEP. India is in dire need to reshape and strengthen its geopolitical and geostrategic ties with its neighboring countries.
Which are the major countries India needs to consider to strengthen its bond?
India and Bangladesh Relationship.
We all know how much importance Bangladesh holds for India. India and Bangladesh are together ever since the Bangladesh liberalization War.
Though India and Bangladesh had disputes over the Teesta River. And various efforts are made to smoothen this issue.
Not to forget, Bangladesh permitted India to use its inland port for the ease of transportation of goods to the North Indian States. With this move, Bangladesh ensured India’s connectivity with the north-eastern states.
Not only connectivity but also security in the north eastern states. The indo-bangladesh security ties and intelligence ties helped stop insurgency in North east and militancy in Bangladesh.
What India is doing to strengthen the relationship?
Bangladesh is one among those countries with whom India would always want to strengthen its geopolitical ties.
Recently Mr. Jaishankar along with the Foreign Minister A K Abdul Memom participated in the 6th joint consultative commission meet with Bangladesh.
It was a virtual meeting. Border Security, promotion of “ air travel bubble ” and flights were the main topics of the meet.
Paying the utmost importance to “ neighbourhood first “ policy India has also promised to sanction some financial help to Bangladesh as well.
How old is India’s ties with Bahrain?
India and Bahrain share very healthy socio-economic, political, cultural, and military ties.
In the seventeenth century, the relation between India and Bahrain blossomed with the oil boom in Bahrain. Bahrain exported $248.12 million worth of crude oil to India in 2016.
More than 350,000 Indians are living in Bahrain due to the attractive job opportunities. All these reasons make it necessary for India to nourish and strengthen its geopolitical ties with Bahrain.
What are the future plans of India to further strengthen the geopolitical ties with Bahrain?
Another economical step on India’s behalf is having a discussion with Bahrain on the development of economical ties with the country. India and Bahrain are to join hands for business and financial purposes as well.
How is Mexico important for India?
Although India and Mexico are strong trading partners. Many IT companies like Infosys, Wipro, TCS Pharmaceutical companies like Ranbaxy and Dr. Reddy Lab as well as J. K. Tyres in auto components have their business in Mexico.
You might be thinking then why even Mexico in this list we already have strong ties with them? But there exists one important reason why India still needs to strengthen its geopolitical ties with this country.
The reason being Mexicans are attracted to the Chinese market because of cheaper prices and bigger volumes. Now that our honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi is trying to do every possible thing to promote and increase Atmanirbhar Bharat. It is not wise to neglect Mexico because of its economic importance.
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Steps taken by the Indian Government to solidify this relationship?
Commerce Minister Anup Wadhwa initiated a video conference meeting between India and Mexico. This was the 5th India- Mexico, High-Level Group on Trade, Investment and Cooperation. Topics such as agriculture, fisheries, Pharmaceutical, Medical, etc remain the topmost to be discussed.
India Australia trade and other diplomatic Ties
Australia lies in India’s extended neighborhood. And India and Australia’s political relationship is rather new and not very ancient.
Defense, trade and investments, IT sector, educational, science, and technology, etc are the main sectors that make Australia India’s eighth-largest trading partner.
Recent activities between India and Australia
In the month of October, an India-Australia Hackathon was organized to find a sustainable solution to the Circular economy. Students, SMEs, and start-ups shared and innovative ideas. And the best among them were also awarded.
India is making little efforts to strengthen and secure this relationsion.
The importance and activities in Quad Nations
To counter the post-Covid 19 crisis and to restore international peace and national peace, a Quad Nations Meeting was held. United Nations, India, Japan, and Australia form the Quad group.
Mr. S Jaishankar represented India while Mike Pompeo represented the US. Marise Payne and Toshimintsu Motegi represented Australia and Japan respectively. They are also the External Affair Ministers of the respective Countries. Free and open trade in the Asian Pacific region was also discussed.
The quad nations recently participated in the Malabar Naval Exercise 2020, where Australia was the newest addition to this.
Being able to conduct such naval exercises in such a planned and organized way in times of pandemic itself shows the dedication and expertise of the nations involved. Setting a goal of friendship and cooperation. Thereby enabling India to strengthen its geopolitical ties with all the countries involved.
So I guess you are aware of India’s dependence on Russia for defense and energy needs. Russia is a predominant nuclear power and a permanent member of UN nations. But Indo-Russian relation is bounded to defense and energy sector only.
However, India’s closeness with USA pulled India’s geopolitical ties with Russia. Both India and Russia seems to be looking for new alliances. The sad part is Russia is getting closer with China. Since both China and Russia are hostile to USA.
Now we all know that both USA and Russia are equally important for India. India is actively participating in BRICS and SCO to rejuvinate and strengthen its geopolitical ties with Russia.
The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Meet
India joined the 20th SCO meet. The meeting was convened by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Prime Minister Narendra Modi participated from India’s side.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the meeting stating India’s cultural relation with SCO and its dedication towards establishing a cooperative network among countries.
This was another big event or rather meeting that took place in 2020. The BRICS member nations attended it with zeal and enthusiasm.
With the motto of “global Stability”, “shared security” and “ innovative growth” this session ended quite well.
As we all know BRICS is the voice of the developing nations. It also provides India to speak up against terrorism.
What makes BRICS important to India
BRICS is one of those major groups that provide an opportunity to engage and resolve mutual disputes with China. It is also helping India to gather the support of all the partner countries.
Lesser-known Initiatives of India to strengthen its geopolitical ties with other countries.
There are many lesser-known areas and countries with which India is strengthening its geopolitical ties as well.
1st India Angola Joint Commission Meet
To develop a fresh relationship with Angola a virtual meeting was held. It was attended by Mr S. Jaishankar and Angola’s Ambassador Tete Antonio.
Development of diplomatic relations and visa issues were the main agenda of the meet. The next meeting is scheduled to take place in 2022.
Bilateral meeting with Nigeria
A bilateral meeting was conducted on a digital platform with Nigeria. Economies, trade, cooperation, cultural exchange, navy were the subject matter of the meeting. Our External Affairs Minister and Nigeria’s Foreign Minister took part in the meeting.
BIMSTEC stands for Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation. The headquarters for BIMSTEC is in Dhaka, Bangladesh. And was carried on under the tremendous and far-sighted vision of Sri Lanka.
The active participation and visits will definitely help India in the near future. There are many goals that need to be achieved by India. And we know very well that India will need the help of other countries to achieve major goals like countering terrorism and making Atmanirbhar Bharat a success.
There are other benefits of strengthening geo-political ties with different countries. Connectivity, security, environmental cooperation, becoming a soft power, international cooperations, transportation and strenghthening markets are among the few of the benefits.