- I2U2 is the new grouping formed by four nations- India, Israel, UAE, and the US. It was given the name International Forum for Economic Cooperation.
- Background of I2U2 Grouping:
- Abraham Accords: In 2020, Israel, UAE and Bahrain signed Abraham Accords that led to normalising of relations between Israel and a number of Arab Gulf countries
- I2U2 was initially formed in October, 2021 following the Abraham Accords, to deal with issues concerning maritime security, infrastructure and transport.
Areas of cooperation:
- India already has a robust bilateral security cooperation with Israel, the US and the UAE. this will furthur strengthen defence ties.
- I2U2 will boost India’s project along with UAE and Saudi Arabia to build a connectivity corridor that runs from India to the Arabian gulf across the Arabian peninsula to Israel, Jordan and from there to the European Union.
- I2U2 can revitalise and re-energise the system of trade and commerce among the four countries After the US, UAE is the second-largest export destination of India..
- Joint efforts by these four countries become crucial to tackle and reduce the consequences of food security and safety.
- Each of these countries is a technological hub Biotechnology is prominent in each of these countries as well. Israel is called a Startup Nation already. India has been also developing a widening startup ecosystem of its own.
- Until now, India’s West Asian policies have largely insisted on keeping its bilateral relationships separate from each other. This is the first step to bring those relationships with UAE and Israel together and merge them.
- India is a massive consumer market. It’s a frontline producer of high-tech and highly sought-after goods as well that will attract investors from West Asia.
- I2U2 will boost India’s geopolitical presence especially in West Asia and India will strategically and economically establish itself as a World player.
- Indian communities in West Asia have a significant impact upon the Indian economy, through inward remittances. Further cooperation with West Asian countries through I2U2 will enhance inward remittance.
- At the grassroot level, the Israel-Palestine conflict is still a major area of concern.
- Iran-Saudi: The Shia-Sunni conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia is also going on which is also running through Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.
- The developing situation might lead to the creation of two groups one with China, Pakistan, Russia, Iran and Turkey while India, Israel, USA and UAE are likely to be on the other side.
- Israel’s Haifa port has been expanded by China, more than one and a half billion-dollar investment in Haifa has been made by China.
- China is also building the Ashdod port which is the only port Israel has in the mediterranean.
- For India, Iran is important in relation to the present context of Afghanistan. India must deal with the challenges both diplomatically and strategically in this region.
- Egypt has friendly relations with all the four countries in this alliance but it must be reassured that it will not be impacted economically or politically.
- Balancing the rival countries diplomatically and strategically in order to maintain friendly relations with each other can be done through mutual cooperation among the four countries.
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