ISSN (Print) 1996-7845

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Aleksei Kupriianov

Russian and Indian Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Region in the Context of Sanctions

2019. Vol. 14. No. 3. P. 117–135 [issue contents]

During the Cold War, the Soviet Union and India, although not in a formal alliance, were strategic partners in the full sense of the word. Soviet naval forces operated in the Indian Ocean, limiting the potential of an American presence. The USSR supported India’s policy on the Middle East. Moscow, New Delhi and Baghdad created a “rouble-rupee” triangle which untied bilateral trade from the dollar and created a working mechanism for mutually beneficial trade. With the collapse of the USSR, Russia’s sphere of influence declined substantially. However, in 2000 Moscow announced its return to South Asia, and it has gradually regained its influence in the region since then. There, the new India is expanding its influence, claiming the status of a great power and the role of a regional leader.

 This article discusses the prospects for cooperation between Russia and India in the Indo-Pacific region in the context of the American imposition of sanctions against Russia. The author analyzes promising areas in which the implementation of joint Russian-Indian projects is possible and concludes that opportunities for such projects exist in virtually the entire Indo-Pacific region, including small island states, Africa and the immediate neighbourhood of India. The author divides countries into three categories: potential U.S. allies (from Washington’s point of view), adversaries of the United States and countries toward which the United States does not pursue an active policy. According to the author, Russia should build relations with all three groups of countries while maintaining contact with India. This will help consolidate anti-American forces in the region and will erode the sanctions regime. The most promising areas for trilateral projects are the traditional fields of cooperation between Russia and India, primarily military-technical cooperation and energy projects. In addition, the author proposes to turn to the Soviet experience of using “soft power” in Asia.

Citation: Kupriianov A. (2019) Russian and Indian Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Region in the Context of Sanction. International Organisations Research Journal , vol. 14, no 3, pp. 117–135 (in English). DOI: 10.17323/1996-7845-2019-03-06.
Keywords: Russia; India; sanctions
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