India’s rise in the global arena has been marked by a series of important engagements such as BRICS, SAGAR, QUAD, International Solar Alliance, and Disaster Resilient Infrastructure Coalition over the past decade. With India assuming the Presidency of G20 and Chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in 2022, what does this mean for India's engagement with the Indo-Pacific?
This article will explore how India's ascension to a leadership role at both G20 and SCO can influence its presence in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond. We will also look at some of the potential effects of India's increased clout in terms of geopolitics and geoeconomics.
With its growing economic clout, India is now in a position to shape global policy. As it takes up the leadership role at the G20 and SCO, India can use its influence to promote its own interests and those of other countries in the Indo-Pacific region. This could include pushing for greater trade and investment opportunities, advocating for increased regional connectivity, and providing diplomatic support for regional security initiatives. This could lead to stronger economic ties between all parties involved, engaging in dialogue with countries like Russia and Ukraine to de-escalate tensions, and greater peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
India's assumption of the presidency of the G20 in December 2022 is a significant moment for the country and for the Indo-Pacific region. As the world's largest democracy and a leading economic power, India's leadership will help to shape debates on critical issues such as economic governance, security, digitalisation, gender equality, sustainability, and climate change.
There is no doubt that India's G20 presidency will have a big impact on the Indo-Pacific region. The Indian Ocean has always been crucial to India's economy and security, and this is likely to become even more important in the years ahead. With an increasingly assertive China seeking to extend its influence across the region, it is more important than ever for India to take a leading role in shaping its future.
With its G20 presidency, India will have an opportunity to work closely with other major powers such as the USA, Japan, South Korea and Australia, to ensure that the Indo-Pacific is secure and prosperous. The country can use its G20 platform to promote initiatives such as free trade agreements and regional security dialogues.
India's election as Chair of the SCO provides an opportunity to promote its art and culture, showcase its credentials as a responsible regional power, play a more active role in regional security issues such as energy security, counterterrorism efforts, and the fight against transnational crimes and further its interests in the Indo-Pacific.
The impact of India's leadership at the SCO will be keenly felt in the Indo-Pacific, where the organization is seen as a key platform for promoting peace and stability. India has been at the forefront of pushing for closer cooperation among SCO members on issues related to terrorism and connectivity, and its election as Chair is likely to give a boost to these efforts. As Chair, India will also have an opportunity to engage with other major powers in the region, including China and Russia, on issues of shared interest. Furthermore, India and Russia could balance China’s aggressive expansionist policies and projects jointly.
The Indo-Pacific has emerged as a key focus area for India's foreign policy in recent years, and the SCO provides an important forum for discussing regional issues. India's leadership of the SCO will also serve to strengthen its ties with other member countries, such as Afghanistan, Iran, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. This will have positive implications for India's economic and energy interests in the region, as well as help boost India's diplomatic influence. Ultimately, India's leadership of the SCO will help strengthen its ties with other countries in the Indo-Pacific region and could provide a platform for India to further its interests in the region.
India is also likely to use its leadership role at the G20 and SCO to further its 'Act East' policy, which seeks to promote greater economic and security cooperation with the countries of Southeast Asia. The G20 and SCO engagements provide an important platform for India to engage with the region and could be a useful tool in boosting its diplomatic presence in the Indo-Pacific.
As India takes on the leadership of the G20 and SCO, it is important to leverage its strategic, geopolitical and geoeconomic advantages in the Indo-Pacific region. The first step is to build on the existing strengths of the Indian economy. India is one of the world’s fastest-growing major economies and is expected to continue to grow at a robust pace in the coming years. This provides a strong base for India to work with other G20 and SCO nations to promote global economic growth.
In addition, India’s vast population and young demographics are a major source of strength. India is home to nearly 1.4 billion people, making it the second most populous country in the world. Additionally, more than 60% of the population is below the age of 30, providing a large pool of potential workers and consumers.
Finally, India’s geographic location also gives it a unique advantage in the Indo-Pacific region. India sits at the crossroads of Asia, making it well-positioned to play a leading role in promoting regional cooperation and integration. By leveraging these strengths, India can make a positive impact on both the G20 and SCO agendas and help shape the future of the Indo-Pacific region.
To that end, India should look to expand its strategic partnerships with other countries in the region, work closely with international organizations to promote economic development, and actively engage in dialogue and cooperation on issues of security. By doing so, India will be able to maximize its influence and gain a greater presence in the global economy.
To sum up, India's leadership of the G20 and SCO will provide it with new opportunities for economic engagement and political influence in the region, help cement its status as a major global power and allow it to be at the forefront of international efforts to tackle challenges like climate change. The impact of India's presence in these organizations will continue to be seen for years to come.
India has already made its mark on the global stage, and its leadership of both organizations is a sign that it is now ready to take on a more prominent role in the international community. In doing so, India will be able to make a real difference for itself and for the Indo-Pacific region. The region is set to be one of the most significant arenas for international cooperation, and India's presence in the G20 and SCO will be key to ensuring its continued growth and stability.