Topics for International Relations
India and its neighbourhood - relations
Bilateral, regional, and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests
> India-Africa Trade and Investment Agreement (IATIA)- International Relations with Africa
- PIDA ( Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa): India is implementing it with help from African Development Bank
- ‘Focus Africa’ Programme
- Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) program: for technical assistance and training
- Pan-African E-Network to bridge the digital divide in Africa
- Asia-Africa Growth Corridor (2017): India-Japan partnership for linking Indian ports with those in Africa
> Long-term resilient supply chains (RSC)- International Relations with US & EU
- India, the US, EU and other countries have finalized a four-point roadmap (formulated last year during the supply chain summit in the US) for building collective, long-term resilient supply chains (RSC)
- To counter risks arising from supply dependencies and vulnerabilities.
- Meaning: A resilient supply chain means having the capability to resist or even avoid the impact of a supply chain disruption – and the ability to quickly recover from a disruption.
- Threats to supply chain: Geopolitics (e.g. domination of China on global supply chain), Wars (e.g. Russian oil to EU), Pandemic, Extreme climate events (e.g. heatwaves), and Natural Disasters.
- Initiatives: Supply chain resilience initiative (SCRI) (by India, Japan and Australia) to counter China’s dominance in Indo-pacific.
> Minerals Security Partnership (MSP)
- As part of a global ‘China-plus-one’ strategy adopted post the Covid-19 pandemic that caused massive supply-chain disruptions, a group of western nations are cooperating to develop alternatives to China to ensure key industrial supplies.
- A new US-led partnership initiative of 11 nations aims to bolster critical mineral supply chains.
Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India's interests, Indian diaspora
> Chin refugees - International Relations with Myanmar
Chin, a group of tribes of Mongol origin, occupy the southernmost part of the mountain ranges separating Myanmar (Burma) from India.
Both Mizo and Chin communities (predominantly Christian) share a common history. Both come from the same larger Zo tribe, therefore share a strong ethnic bond predating India’s Independence.
There is a Free Movement Regime (FMR)2018 between India and Myanmar that allows both communities on either side to go up to 16 km on the other side and stay up to 14 days.
- The Chin refugees are not ‘refugees’ but are rebels who continue to extend support to rebel groups in Myanmar.
- MHA advised the state government to take appropriate action to prevent a possible influx into Indian territory.
- The Centre directed the North-eastern states bordering Myanmar that they do not have powers to grant “refugee status to any foreigner”.
- The Mizoram government has defied the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) orders to “detect and deport the refugees”.
- India has not ratified the 1951 UN Convention on the Status of Refugees but it still can grant asylum to the asylum seeker.
> EU’s palm oil row with Malaysia and Indonesia
- European Union previously decided to phase out the import of unsustainable palm oil by 2030.
- Indonesia and Malaysia say the EU’s palm oil restrictions are unfair, “discriminatory”, and “crop apartheid” and challenged the EU in the WTO.
- Indonesia and Malaysia, are the world’s two largest palm oil producers, accounting for 90% of the global production.
- However, most of it is produced on the plantation by clearing rainforests.
- ReFuelEU initiative: EU lawmakers adopted draft rules for the ReFuelEU initiative, which would mean 85% of all used aviation fuel would have to be “sustainable” by 2050.
- It is an edible vegetable oil derived from the mesocarp (reddish pulp) of the fruit of the oil palms.
- Uses: As a cooking oil, in cosmetics, processed foods, cakes, chocolates, soaps, spreads, shampoo, and biofuel ( the use of crude palm oil in making biodiesel is being branded as ‘green diesel’)
- It is inexpensive and produces more oil per hectare as compared to other alternatives such as soybean.
- India is the biggest importer of palm oil (almost 40% of its need)
- Government initiatives: National Mission on Edible Oil-Oil Palm(to boost India’s domestic palm oil production by 3 times ( till 2025-26)); Kharif Strategy 2021 for oilseeds; yellow revolution.
> China’s largest-ever military exercises around Taiwan
- China has started its largest-ever military exercises around Taiwan, in the aftermath of visit of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
- Chinese media is tagging the exercise as rehearsal for ‘reunification process’.
- The drill is underway across six zones across Taiwan.
- China’s navy, air force and other departments are taking part in the drill.