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“India- EU relations are like a loveless arranged marriage “. Critically discuss.

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

1. “India- EU relations are like a loveless arranged marriage “. Critically discuss. (250 words)

ISPI online

Why this question:

For long, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. Unfairly large emphasis was laid on foreign policy cooperation, but on many issues divisions far exceeded commonalities, leading to disappointment and an overall delusion in the potential of the partnership. Today, not only do the EU and India have a thriving commercial relationship and growing security collaboration, but both partners have developed greater depth in political cooperation internationally while exploring new and innovative areas for further broadening their partnership.

Key demand of the question:

The question wants us to express our knowledge and understanding about the India-EU relations, its evolution, the concerns and challenges and the way forward.

Directive:

Critically discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Provide the Background of India-EU relations.

  • India-EU relationship dates back to 1960s when India was the first country to establish relationship with European economic union which later evolved into common market -European union
  • For more than a decade, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. India was acknowledged as a strategic partner in 2004.
  • But fifteen years on there is still no mutually agreed set of clear priorities. The EU-India relationship fails to acknowledge each partner’s individual realities.

Body:

Discuss the following points:

  • Brief summary if India EU relations
    • Trade and Investment
    • Energy Cooperation
    • Research and development
    • And so on
  • Concerns in India-EU relations
    • India’s protectionism to automobile sector
    • India’s Intellectual property regime with the provision of compulsory licensing and manufacture of generic medicine
    • Domestic source obligation in the multi brand retail
    • European Union’s heavily subsidised agro industry. This could hurt Indian farmers
    • EU Import restriction: like ban on the import of mangoes from India
    • Work visa restriction – movement of skilled professionals
  • Way forward

Conclusion:

Based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.