Growing Significance of Asia Pacific Region in International Politics

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Asia Pacific is the part of the world located in western Pacific Ocean. It includes regions of East Asia, South Asia, south East Asia and region of Oceania. It also consists of some areas of North Atlantic, for example Russia and the countries in America which lies on the bank of eastern Pacific Ocean. For instance, states like Mexico, USA, Canada, chili and Peru etc. Moreover, countries of Oceania like New Zealand and Australia are also located in Asia Pacific. This area includes a number of states; some of them are USA, China, Russia, Japan, India, Pakistan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan and Pakistan. Moreover, it includes some significant organizations like ASEAN, SAARC, Asia Pacific economic cooperation, economic cooperation organization and Asia development Bank etc are some political and economic intergovernmental organizations based in Asia Pacific region.

The Asia Pacific region plays an important role in the politics of international affairs because of a number of reasons; some of them are ; It is home of almost half of the world population. Some huge states in terms of population exist in this region, for instance, India and China has combine population of 2.8 billion and both states are situated in Asia Pacific. Similarly, the members of ASEAN countries have also approximately population of 622 million people.

This region has strategically and militarily significance as well as states like, US, China, India, Pakistan, Japan and North Korea also located in this. Moreover, it has economic importance as well as some major economic powers like US, China, Australia, India, Singapore and Taiwan also situated here. These states in Asia Pacific play important role in Global economy and contribute almost 39 percent to world economy. Some famous and economically important ports also exist here which are important economic spots. For instance, port of Shanghai is located in this region which provides almost 600 million tons goods to the world. Along with these economic significances, the china and US economic rivalry majorly based in the region of Asia pacific. The south china sea and Indian ocean has their great importance to both china and US. Both have major economic ambitions in these areas so the tension between the two states is also on high here. Such economic tension and conflict are one of the hot topics in current international politics.

Similarly, if we look to this region through the lenses of US and India strategic partnership, this region contributes a lot to the international politics. For instance, the US views India as a rising power to contain China. The US has made a strategic alliance with India in the region and both states have conducted a series of high-level agreements in this regard. For instance, the Logistic exchange memorandum of agreements LEMOA2016, Communication compatibility and Security agreement 2018, Basic exchange and cooperation agreement (BECA), and the latest defense agreement 2020 are some high profile strategic and military agreements between the USA and India for countering the increased influence of China in the region. US is the major global power and India is one of the major powers in Asia, nexus of such important actors in Asia pacific has significance impacts on regional as well as global politics.

On industrial side, Asia Pacific contributes about 43 billion dollars of ship building industry and shares almost 66 percent in world economic market. Similarly, if we consider it through pure political point of view, the three members of United Nations Security Council, US, China and Russia are located in this region which gives a tremendous importance to this region. Some of the biggest cities which are not only populated cities in the world but also have great economic significance are also located in Asia Pacific. For example, Mumbai, Karachi, Dhaka, Tokyo, New York, Shanghai, Beijing, Bangkok and Los Angeles etc. Presence of such economic and political actors has significance implication on the political economy of the international system.

This region is significantly important for international politics and it can be noticed from the US intentions as it has special intentions and long term ambitions to play its role in the region. The former US president Obama was known as first pacific president, because he not only launched policy of Asia Pacific, pivot of Asia but declared that the world order will be shaped by politics of Asia Pacific and US has to play its role in it. The current US administration has also special focus on the region as it has not only economic but military presence in the region as well.

Similarly, the raising of China as a strong economic power and the US policies to contain it also adds huge significance to the region. China is a communist state and it is highly increasing its economic growth. The US acknowledges it a threat to its hegemonic status and tends to counter its economic development and to contain its influence. In these regards, as mentioned earlier it not only engaged India but other actors like Japan and Australia etc as well for the very purpose.  In this regard, the region of Asia Pacific is extremely important as both have healthy activities in this region which provide the region to play its significant role in international politics. Moreover, there are several conflicts and issues in the region which have great influence on international politics. Apart from conflicts on south china sea, issues between china and Taiwan, japan and Russia, China and Japan India and china border disputes have its own importance in international politics. Similarly, historical issues between Pakistan and India over Kashmir have witnessed great impact on international politics. Both states are nuclear powers and have major status in south Asia and united nations have also released several resolutions on the said issue between the two states. Similarly, Afghanistan peace process also occurs in this region which is one of the hottest and discussed topics in international politics

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Barkat Ullah
About Barkat Ullah 5 Articles
The author is doing his master’s in international Relations. He resides in Islamabad and has a wide experience of writing for newspapers.

1 Comment

  1. The Asia Pacific region is certainly on a rise, and proposes great opportunity as well as threat to the western powers. Today (15/03/2021) the UK government released the Integrated Review regarding security and foreign policy which highlights a significant shift of attention and cooperation to the Indo-Pacific. Its exciting to see this shift in global dynamic and follows from Obama’s ‘Shift to the East’.

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