3) Examine the opportunities and threats in India’s maritime partnership with ASEAN?(250 words) 

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Topic – Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests

3) Examine the opportunities and threats in India’s maritime partnership with ASEAN?(250 words) 

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Why this question

China’s enhancement of its naval power, and its growing strategic presence in Indian ocean has led India to out special emphasis on maritime partnership with littoral countries of Indian ocean. ASEAN plays a key role in that partnership and this question wishes to explore this aspect.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to examine the overall nature of India’s maritime cooperation with ASEAN with special emphasis on the opportunities in this area which can enhance the nature of this relationship. Also, we need to discuss the threats and ways to counter that threat.

Directive word

Examine – When you are asked to examine, you have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Discuss the emphasis India has put on maritime cooperation with nations both at a bilateral level and through forums like IORA etc.

Body

  • Give an overall picture of India’s strategic partnership with ASEAN, Act East Policy and what exactly is the nature of this partnership. Also discuss how this is a focus area for India in light of SAGAR.
  • Discuss the opportunities like common objectives of support for free, open and rules based Indo Pacific, threat of a hegemon, good economic relations, institutional mechanism – ADMM+, IORA, naval exercises etc
  • Discuss the threats like rise of China, lack of consensus amongst ASEAN etc
  • Discuss how such challenges can be countered

Conclusion – Discuss the importance of growing this partnership and the way forward.