India has stakes in wider Gulf region: Indian NSA

Discussion in 'Foreign Relations' started by ejazr, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    India has stakes in wider Gulf region, says official - Arab News

    RIYADH: India's National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon said in Riyadh on Monday that the energy-rich Gulf states had a special focus in his country's foreign policy with New Delhi emerging as a strong strategic partner in the stability, security and economic wellbeing of the region.

    “India has a stake in issues relating to peace and stability in the wider Gulf region, including Iran and Iraq,” said Menon.

    The Indian official, who was addressing a session on the second day of the high-profile Gulf and the Globe conference, called on the Gulf states and countries in the extended neighborhood to create “a climate of peace by working together on issues of regional security.”

    He indicated in his speech that India cannot maintain a business-as-usual scenario with the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the region at large because of India’s substantial and abiding interests in the region.

    On the other hand, India's political traditions and long-term interests in the Gulf will also now allow it to become a junior partner in a US-led Western alliance. However, Menon reiterated that India has and will have a stake in the Gulf because of its age-old ties with the region. “India's own success is increasingly bound to the fate of the rest of the world as we live in an increasingly interdependent world,” he added.

    “We will therefore work with our international partners, contributing within our own capacity to create an external environment for the domestic transformation of India … and that is what Riyadh and New Delhi have attempted to do together in the G20.”

    He said the balance of power shifts and technological change were creating a world where power was more widely held.

    Monday's first session of conference was also addressed by Bilahari Kausikan, permanent secretary at Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Sun Shuzhong of China and Bulant Aras, chairman of the Center for Strategic Research of Turkey.

    The session was chaired by professor Abdulkhaleq Abdullah of Emirates University. The session concluded with a consensus that neither rising Asian powers, such as China and India, nor the EU as a whole can or should act as the new security guarantors for the Gulf, essentially replacing the US.

    The panelists were very clear in stating that their countries could not embrace overall military security roles.

    Menon said India would not be like the traditional big powers. “But I am sure that working together, the Gulf and India will be able to face the challenges that the new geopolitics are throwing up and take advantage of the opportunities that these changes are opening up,” said Menon. He noted that the GCC as a bloc is home for over 6 million Indian workers and Indo-Gulf trade exceeds $100 billion annually.

    Menon was of the opinion that the need for a strong strategic partnership in the Gulf and the possibility of India playing a role in it arises due to the changing tides on both sides. On a bilateral level, Saudi Arabia and India enjoy cordial relations, which is evident from the visit of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to India in 2006 and a visit by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Riyadh in 2010.

    Referring to India's consistent economic growth, he said his country's economic prospects were good. Over the last two decades, India has averaged over 6 percent growth, which accelerated to between 8 to 9 percent in the last five years, said Menon. He further pointed out that the Indian economy could sustain high growth rates.

    Chinese Ambassador Shuzhong said: “The central goal of Chinese foreign policy is to ensure peace and security in the Gulf region and the world at large. The Gulf and its security dynamics have been largely shaped by the US,” said Singaporean official Kausikan, while referring to the growth of multiple major powers.

    He noted that US-Sino relations is the most important bilateral relations in the context of global politics.
     
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  3. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

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    I don't understand why don't these guys actually focus on viable places like South America and Southern Indian Ocean where it is much more easier to mine resources from rather than over depending on these wahabis who want to turn India into another Pakistan. While I am all for ties and trade of oil and other stuff, GOI must look for resources elsewhere as well. Everywhere US sanctions, Chinese smartly trade and get the resources they want for their nation.

    We need to adopt a similar approach. Iranian oil, getting permits to drill in southern Hemisphere, start setting up massive rigs with Vietnam, Africa is a valuable partner in future trade of resources. What's more? Africans prefer us better than dictator taming Chinese. Wonder why don't we go all full-steam? This is why too much democracy is also not good for nation.
     
  4. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    I think we should have more confidence in our self and our ability to shape other countries and outlook rather than be defensive. Why is it considered difficult that Indian Islamic influences can moderate Saudi behavior? After all, there are some great Islamic institutions in India and many Islamic scholars from India are highly respected in the Arab world.

    Living in a secular democracy, I am sure that India can have a moderating affect on Saudi Islam just as we have shaped cultures of other GCC countries like UAE, Oman e.t.c where even the locals can speak Hindi/Urdu and watch Indian movies and wear Indian dresses.


    Apart from that, Indian diaspora of about 6 million is highly concentrated in this region and this region is also very close to India. The Central Asian region, South East Asia and West Asia including Iran can't be ignored and India needs to be a security guarantor for this region. Any destabilization that happens here will affect the Indian economy and security calculations. And India-GCC trade is the biggest trading bloc with over $100B. Bigger than China, EU or the US individually. Its not minerals and oils but markets for our products like IT and engineering goods as well as inward investments into realty and infrastructure. Given the high per capita income in these countries, Indian companies should compete and get a bigger share of the pie rather than these projects going to EU or US companies as before.
     
    amitkriit likes this.
  5. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    A participant wrote a summary of this entire session and had this interesting anecdote from the session that in a way is indicative of what the GCC countries feel about Pakistan.
    The entire summary is an interesting read as well
    The Gulf and the Globe � Travels and Observations
     
  6. agentperry

    agentperry Senior Member Senior Member

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    Right as the session was ending, a very agitated woman from Pakistan complained bitterly about how America has treated her country and seemed to demand that Saudi Arabia do something about it. Someone speculated afterward that what she was really upset about was that while the rising powers session had speakers from India, China, Turkey, and even Singapore, there was no speaker from Pakistan on it or any other panel—thus implying that the conference organizers did not consider Pakistan to be as important as India, China, Turkey, or even Singapore. (Prince Turki left the room without responding to her.)


    aukaat dikha di.... shown her, her value. next to nill.
     

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