India-Pacific Islands Brief

India-Pacific Islands Brief

By Rani Mullen and Kailash Prasad
1 November 2014

The Pacific Islands, a group of fourteen island nations in the South Pacific Ocean had been a source of low interest for the global powers, however, this seems to have changed as Asia draws increasing attention from the world economies in the 21st century. Despite geographical distance and unenthusiastic historical interaction, initiation of India’s development engagement with these island nations date back to as early as the year 1973. Importantly, over the past decade, India has been further successful in reinvigorating development ties with all the fourteen island nations. The strengthening of this relationship holds huge potential both for India and all the fourteen island nations, as it provides newer markets for India exports and more favorable terms of access to potentially resource rich Exclusive Economic Zones of the Pacific Islands. On the other hand, Pacific Islands stand to benefit immensely from India’s experience in diverse fields including low cost renewable energy as well as greater flexibility in their foreign policy choices. Thus, in light of these considerations, this paper looks into India’s development cooperation with the Pacific Islands by segregating it into various sectors of interest.


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