- India and its neighbourhood- relations.
What to study?
For Prelims: Members of the Quad grouping, countries in the Indian ocean region, Chinese military bases.
For Mains: The Quad grouping- features, significance, concerns and potential.
Context: Foreign ministers of the Quad countries – India, US, Australia and Japan – met recently on the sidelines of the UNGA meeting.
Significance, focus and outcomes of latest meet:
- The Ministers met to discuss cooperation on counter-terrorism, mentoring, assistance in disaster relief, airtime security, cooperation, development, finance and cybersecurity efforts etc.
- The Quad countries were “resolute” in their view of the centrality of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) in South East Asia.
What is Quad grouping?
- The quadrilateral formation includes Japan, India, United States and Australia.
- All four nations find a common ground of being the democratic nations and common interests of unhindered maritime trade and security.
- The idea was first mooted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2007. However, the idea couldn’t move ahead with Australia pulling out of it.
Significance of the grouping:
- Quad is an opportunity for like-minded countries to share notes and collaborate on projects of mutual interest.
- Members share a vision of an open and free Indo-Pacific.
- It is one of the many avenues for interaction among India, Australia, Japan and the US and should not be seen in an exclusive context.
Sources: the Hindu.
Mains Question: In its ambition and enthusiasm to actively engage in “Quadrilateral” grouping, India should not neglect its neighbours. Comment.