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India and Southeast Asia


  • G.V.C. Naidu


Southeast Asia has always occupied a unique place in India’s external relations since ancient times but colonialism, followed by the Cold War, severely hampered these links. These could only be revived in the early 1990s, driven by economic and political exigencies, through what is called the ‘Look East’ policy. It has since gathered enormous momentum and evolved into a comprehensive approach encompassing economic, political and strategic facets. Despite being a relatively minor player economically, India’s importance in the emerging regional order is becoming vital. Its engagement of East Asia cannot be construed as the loss of Southeast Asia. The region will continue to remain India’s major focus because of its geostrategic significance and the instrumental value of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Suggested Citation

  • G.V.C. Naidu, 2010. "India and Southeast Asia," International Studies, , vol. 47(2-4), pages 285-304, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:intstu:v:47:y:2010:i:2-4:p:285-304

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    Cited by:

    1. Bafoil, François, 2013. "Capitalisme politique et développement dépendant en Asie du Sud-Est," Revue de la Régulation - Capitalisme, institutions, pouvoirs, Association Recherche et Régulation, vol. 13.


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