India’s Neighbourhood: Challenges in the Next Two Decades
Rumel Dahiya and Ashok K. Behuria
Institute for Defence Studies & Analyses (IDSA), India
The chapters in the book take a prospective look at India's neighbourhood, as it may evolve by 2030. They underline the challenges that confront Indian policymakers, the opportunities that are likely to emerge, and the manner in which they should frame foreign and security policies for India, to maximise the gains and minimise the losses.
The key findings that emerge from this volume are: the geopolitical situation in the neighbourhood is likely to change significantly due to uncertainties in the global economy, chronic instability in the Af-Pak region, increasing salience of external factors in regional politics, continuing anti-India sentiments in some of the countries, demographic pressures, growth in illegal migration, and adverse consequences of climate change. However, there are also signs of greater desire for economic integration, strengthening of democratic institutions in some countries, and emphasis on regional cooperation. While India may face increasing security challenges due to instability in certain countries, there will be an opportunity for it to better integrate its economy with the region.
The contributors to the volume argue that in order to deal with the uncertainties in an effective manner, India has to fine-tune its diplomatic apparatus to proactively deal with emerging realities in the neighbourhood; systematically pursue policies for inclusive and equitable economic growth at home; build networks of interdependence with all neighbouring countries; significantly improve the quality of the country’s governance; take measures to deal with internal security situation effectively; build domestic consensus on key issues affecting India’s neighbourhood policy; sustain economic growth; adopt cooperative security approaches to deal with regional issues; and at the same time develop appropriate and robust defence capabilities to meet complex security challenges it is going to face in future.