Jaishankar’s Blueprint: India’s Ambitious Plan for Alternative Logistic Corridors to Suez Canal Routes

In a recent address to businessmen and traders in Ahmedabad, Union Minister of External Affairs (MEA) S Jaishankar unveiled India’s ambitious plans to establish alternative logistic corridors that would link the Pacific with the Atlantic Ocean. Highlighting the vulnerabilities of shipping lines passing through the Suez Canal due to threats like drone and missile attacks and Somalian pirate activities, Jaishankar emphasized the need for diversified connectivity routes.

Jaishankar revealed that India has dispatched 21 Naval vessels to the region to safeguard its interests, acknowledging that reliance on one or two connectivity corridors is insufficient for a large economy like India.

Detailing the initiatives, Jaishankar mentioned the decision taken last year to develop an alternative connectivity corridor starting from the Gujarat and Maharashtra coasts, traversing through UAE, Saudi Arabia, the Mediterranean Sea, and Europe. This move aims to reduce dependence on the Suez Canal and mitigate risks associated with maritime transportation.

Additionally, India is actively exploring other corridors, including one linking the Chabahar port in Iran with Russia, and another leveraging the melting polar ice caps to connect Valvadistock, Russia, and Europe.

In the eastern direction, India is eyeing the construction of a highway linking Manipur in India with Vietnam. If realized, this project would position India at the heart of a corridor stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific, reinforcing its strategic significance.

Jaishankar stressed the importance of not only forging logistic partnerships but also seeking technology and investment collaborations to bolster India’s global standing. He emphasized the pivotal role of Foreign Policy in facilitating business endeavors.

During his visit, Jaishankar also touched upon territorial disputes with China, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan, criticizing former Prime Minister Pandit Nehru’s diplomatic stance in the 1950s. He highlighted Nehru’s prioritization of China’s interests over India’s, citing instances where Nehru purportedly placed India’s aspirations behind those of China’s in international forums like the UN.

Reflecting on past challenges, Jaishankar asserted that India has made significant strides in addressing various issues over the past decade, albeit with varying degrees of success, underscoring the nation’s evolving foreign policy priorities and strategies.

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