Abe, Modi Exercise Their Right to Help Shape Asia's Future
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits India this week at a time of transition for Asia's leading powers. First, India has surpassed China as the world's fastest-growing major economy, putting it in pole position as Asia's most dynamic growth market. Second, Japan has returned to economic growth and operates under new laws making it easier to pursue military cooperation with like-minded nations such as India. Third, the strategic map of Eurasia is being redrawn as China "goes West," developing new infrastructure corridors to the Middle East and Europe, while India "acts East" by deepening ties with friendly powers in East and Southeast Asia. The interaction of these dynamics -- a slower-growing but externally ambitious China, a resurgent Japan, and a modernizing India asserting itself across the Indo-Pacific -- will shape the future of Asia.
India is determined to engage more closely with East Asia to catalyze economic growth. As Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared at last year's East Asia Summit, "A new era of economic development, industrialization and trade has begun in India. Externally, India's 'Look East Policy' has become 'Act East Policy.'"