S Jaishankar Strategy: How foreign policy can propel India's economic growth
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar today said foreign policy can play a great role in propelling economic change in India.
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar today said foreign policy can play a great role in propelling economic change in India. Speaking at an event in Delhi, the former bureaucrat-turned-External Affairs Minister, said that there is a greater responsibility for the Indian foreign policy to focus on external aspects of it to propel economic change. This can be done by creating partnerships and mechanisms that will help Indian businesses do their business outside the country. Explaining his view, the external affairs minister said that a "global rebalancing" is taking place in the international arena. The "sharpest manifestation" of this, he said, is the rise of China and, to an extent, the rise of India. In the case of India, he said, a large part of India's economy has been externalised and there is a need for India's foreign policy to help Indian companies gain better access to overseas markets.
In addition to this, a large part of India's economy has been externalised and there is a need for India's foreign policy to help Indian companies gain better access to the overseas markets.
Jaishankar was speaking at his first public event - The Growth Net Summit 7.0 - since becoming the external affairs minister. The event was organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Ananta Centre
Jaishankar also called for greater integration between government departments to create a stronger focus on the economic issues being faced by Indian companies, especially in overseas markets.
The Union minister said that the world is undergoing very sharp changes. These are: First, globalisation is under stress, especially in terms of market access and mobility of labour. Second, The growth of nationalism, which is getting electorally validated across the world. Third, global rebalancing is taking place, which is manifested currently in the rise of countries like China. Some of the international changes are also contradictory in nature.
For example, some countries are increasing tariffs while others are focused on improving connectivity. There is a rise in bilateral free trade agreements in the wake of the fact that the World Trade Organization (WTO) system is not working.
In the wake of these changes and challenges, Jaishankar said that India needs to find ways to fix architecture such as the WTO and make it more effective. "If we want to propel economic growth, then there is greater responsibility for Indian foreign policy to focus on the external aspect of it," PTI quoted the minister as saying. He added that there is big responsibility on the External Affairs Ministry to focus on project execution which has strategic significance.
Talking about the role he would play as the external affairs minister, Jaishankar said he will continue with his predecessor Sushma Swaraj's social media outreach to help Indians abroad. He will give "enormous emphasis" to Indians in distress as they now expect the Indian government to reach out to them. This has also changed the image of the foreign ministry, he said.