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Addressing Asia’s security concerns amid India-China standoff

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India-China border standoff at Ladakh’s Galwan Valley in recent weeks has led to increased security concerns across entire Asia. Rising differences between India and China on various fronts have added to concerns over maritime security in the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean region as well.

Amid the response against COVID-19 infections across the region, Asian nations are facing major security challenges varying from lack of regional cooperation and scarcity of resources. Significantly, Asia’s response against these challenges will largely depend on the security cooperation between India and China.

For China, one of the prominent security concerns in Asia lies in its positioning in the South China Sea, along with the Korean Peninsula. On the other hand, India has been facing challenges concerning long-running unresolved territorial disputes and cross-border terrorism. In addition, India’s position in Asia continues to be under a security threat with China emerging as a dominant power in the region. Being one of the major economies in Asia, China is seeking to increase its control over maritime and trading particularly in South and South-East Asian nations. Meanwhile, India also occupies a crucial position in Asia with close partnerships on socio-economic fronts with many countries in the region.

Significantly, Asian countries have been facing difficulty in cooperation at various fronts including territorial integrity, ethnic conflicts, human rights concerns, climate change issues, and environmental protection. According to recent research by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), the impact of climate change is expected to be more severe in Asia than in other parts of the world.

While COVID-19 has shifted the focus of the world to the post-pandemic recovery process, Asia is facing major climate hazards with significant socio-economic impacts. This potential threat calls for all Asian nations to coordinate their actions to address the challenges posing a severe risk to the existence of the region.

Therefore, being two of the biggest powers in Asia, it is important for China and India to work towards cooperative response towards the growth and development of the region in areas like climate change and prosperity.

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