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India will occupy pivotal role in China-West rivalry

Monday, February 2, 2015

Subject

India's regional diplomacy.

Significance

Increasing India's regional influence is a priority for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government. Immediately following his election in May, Modi launched a series of initiatives in Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Myanmar, as well as Sri Lanka. In part, the aim is to expand business opportunities and create political will in the region for economic integration. Another motivation is to contain China's influence in India's immediate neighbourhood.

Impacts

  • Balancing growing cooperation and competition in India-China ties will be increasingly difficult for both sides.
  • India's naval projection in the Indian Ocean is no match for China's.
  • Sri Lanka's new government will not alienate China, but is likely to maintain some distance.
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