#GS II International Relations
- India joined other nations in calling for a “just and lasting peace in Ukraine” and respect for a rules-based order in the South and East China Seas in the inaugural Quad proclamation, which is seen as criticising both Russia and China.
- The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) involving India, the United States, Japan, and Australia aims to ensure and maintain a “free, open, and prosperous” Indo-Pacific region.
- The idea of Quad was first put up by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2007. However, the idea was unable to move forward when Australia withdrew, purportedly as a result of Chinese pressure.
- Shinzo Abe once more put up the notion of Asia’s “Democratic Security Diamond,” with involvement from Australia, India, Japan, and the US, in order to safeguard the marine commons from the Indian Ocean to the western Pacific.
- In November 2017, India, the US, Australia, and Japan (primarily China) created the long-awaited “Quad” Coalition to develop a new strategy to protect the independence of the vital sea routes in the Indo-Pacific (especially China).
The Four Powers and China:
- USA: To stop China’s growing influence in East Asia, the USA had a plan in place. So, the USA sees the coalition as a chance to recover its power in the Indo-Pacific area.
- The US has referred to China and Russia as strategic foes in its National Security Policy, National Defense Strategy, and the Pentagon’s report on the Indo-Pacific Strategy.
- Australia: Australia is concerned about China’s growing influence over its infrastructure, politics, and educational institutions.
- In light of its disproportionate economic dependence on China for development, Australia has maintained its commitment to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with China.
- Japan: Throughout the past ten years, Japan has expressed its displeasure with China’s territorial incursion in the region.
- The economy of Japan continues to be largely dependent on trade with China; since the beginning of 2017, net exports have precisely contributed one-third of Japan’s economic growth.
- As a result, Japan is balancing its territorial concerns with China with its economic duties.
- Japan has also pledged to taking part in infrastructure projects in other nations as part of the Belt and Road Initiative. By doing this, Japan might strengthen its ties with China while lessening its influence there.
- India is in a challenging strategic position as a result of China’s violations of international law, particularly the building of military installations on reclaimed islands in the South China Sea, as well as its expanding economic and military strength.
- Given the strategic significance of China, India is carefully balancing China and the US by supporting China’s strategic autonomy, which has historically given China comfort.
- Notwithstanding China’s concerns about the drill, India has also refused to allow Australia to take part in the Malabar Trilateral Maritime exercises between India, the US, and Japan.
- The recent summit between Prime Minister Modi and President Xi Jinping in Mamallapuram resulted in fruitful developments, and both leaders view it as essential to providing stakeholders on both sides of the border with strategic direction.
- China’s territorial claims: According to China, it has long controlled nearly the entire South China Sea region, giving it the right to create islands. However, the case was dismissed by the International Court of Arbitration in 2016.
- Connection between ASEAN and China: China and the ASEAN nations are strong allies. China’s growing sway over ASEAN countries is seen in the recently formed Regional Cooperation Economic Partnership (RCEP).
- Economic Might of China: The Quad states cannot afford to have unpleasant relations with China given China’s economic influence and the reliance on it by countries like Japan and Australia.
- Convergence of the Quad Nations: Each country in the Quad alliance strives for a certain equilibrium of interests. As a result, the Quad Nation’s overall vision is disjointed.
How to Continue:
- For the Quad, a more thorough self-image will be required. Impulsivity needs to be restrained by the Quad members. Also, it’s critical to maintain openness and make sure the phrase “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” is more than simply a catchphrase.
- Yet, countries like Australia, Japan, and India may set the standard for infrastructural development, while the US must also adopt a more proactive approach to promote the idea of connectedness.
- The Quad should concentrate on establishing a strong framework for regional discourse and working with ASEAN countries on matters of regional significance.
- India obtains geopolitical credibility and an unique chance to actively shape a regional security architecture with implications for the entire world by entering the Quad framework.
Source The Hindu