Raquel Jorge is Coverage Analyst answerable for the know-how coverage and worldwide affairs agenda at Elcano Royal Institute. Carisa Nietsche is an Affiliate Fellow for the Transatlantic Safety Program at CNAS.
Earlier this month, India hosted the G20 presidency, burnishing its credentials as a pacesetter on the world stage. India’s rising geopolitical significance is obvious, as each the USA and European Union have cast varied initiatives to deepen cooperation with the nation.
Nonetheless, regardless of the rising significance of the Indo-Pacific area, the transatlantic companions didn’t point out the Indo-Pacific companions within the newest EU-US Commerce and Know-how Council (TTC) joint assertion. This can be a notable oversight, as the worldwide nature of provide chains and the know-how ecosystem necessitates coordination between the Indo-Pacific and transatlantic companions. To foster deeper coordination, the transatlantic companions ought to strategy New Delhi to function a bridge to the Indo-Pacific.
At the moment, the transatlantic strategy to the Indo-Pacific has been piecemeal, with the US and the EU establishing their very own bilateral partnerships and small coalitions within the area. One motive the EU-US TTC has opted to not cooperate with nations within the Indo-Pacific stems from the talk between the US and Europe over China coverage. Regardless of these variations, cooperation is feasible and formal coordination between Indo-Pacific nations and the EU-US TTC can be a drive multiplier for an affirmative agenda on know-how globally.
There are a number of causes that India may function the gateway to the Indo-Pacific for the transatlantic companions. For one, the US and the EU have sturdy diplomatic ties with India on commerce and know-how points. Already, the EU launched its second bilateral Commerce and Know-how Council, with India. Equally, the USA cooperates with India by the Quadrilateral Safety Dialogue (or Quad) – with Japan and Australia – and the lately introduced US-India initiative on Vital and Rising Know-how (iCET). Sturdy buying and selling relationships with India additionally present a basis for cooperation. The EU is India’s second largest buying and selling accomplice, and India is the 9th largest items buying and selling accomplice with the US.
Regardless of the guarantees of cooperation between the transatlantic companions and India, there stay a number of challenges that might hobble deep and sustained cooperation. India continues to be trying to chart a 3rd approach between the USA and Russia. Traditionally, India has been the world’s largest purchaser of arms from Moscow, however the conflict it began in Ukraine may problem Russia’s protection industrial base and talent to offer tools to India. Moreover, India’s democracy has eroded throughout Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tenure, as assault on minorities and harassment of opposition events will increase. Likewise, India has a rocky monitor file on digital rights and web freedom. In 2022, India had the best variety of web shutdowns worldwide, with 84 disruptions.
The EU and the US ought to be capable of steadiness low-hanging fruit and impactful deliverables of their relationship with India. There are a number of areas the place the US, EU, and India may operationalize this know-how triangle.
For one, semiconductor provide chain resiliency ought to prime the agenda. Semiconductor manufacturing is a precedence space for India – largely evidenced by the lately launched “India Semiconductor Mission.” Already, the US and European firms have a presence in India for chip design. Nonetheless, packaging – or the method of inserting chips in protecting casing – is one space the place India can bolster its market presence and assist diversify the semiconductor worth chain. The US and Europe have a vested curiosity in rising India’s packaging presence, as there may be sturdy geographic focus of packaging in China. Not too long ago, US firm Micron Know-how dedicated $1 billion to determine a chip packaging facility in India. This current growth highlights a case examine for a way the US and Europe can work with India to additional bolster its packaging presence and diversify the worth chain.
One other necessary alternative is quantum info science and know-how (QIST). Prime Minister Modi lately highlighted India’s goal to remain on the forefront of the quantum frontier and to take action alongside companions. Each TTCs embody QIST initiatives, together with the EU-U.S. TTC’s skilled job drive and the EU-India TTC’s strategic applied sciences, digital governance and digital connectivity working group. The 2 TTCs ought to set up a coordination mechanism to establish areas for US-EU-India analysis collaboration, together with engagement on norms and requirements growth.
One alternative is thru the Quad’s lately established Worldwide Requirements Cooperation Community (ISCN). The US Division of Commerce ought to prolong the community to European nations (as they did for Canada) or hyperlink the ISCN with the transatlantic Strategic Requirements Data (SSI) mechanism. The EU’s expertise managing and linking quantum tasks throughout Member States – together with the European Excessive Efficiency Computing Joint Enterprise (EuroHPC JU) and the European Quantum Communication Infrastructure (EuroQCI) Initiative – may function a case examine for forging cross-border belief, engendering collaboration, and growing high-technology R&D platforms between the USA, Europe, and India. One other approach of deepening collaboration is by establishing quantum expertise change applications between the US, the EU and India.
Third, cooperation on digital infrastructure, particularly next-generation wi-fi networks resembling 6G, stays paramount. Prime Minister Modi introduced India’s purpose to determine itself as a world chief in 6G and to roll out 6G companies earlier than 2030. Aligning 6G danger assessments early shall be crucial to maneuver ahead with any shared technique. The US, EU, and India ought to deal with collectively growing 6G requirements and multilateralizing them on the Worldwide Telecommunication Union (ITU) and different our bodies.
One other space for cooperation is coordinating telecommunications safety help to growing nations. There are a number of initiatives underway offering help to growing nations, together with the 2 TTCs, the Partnership for International Infrastructure and Funding (PGII), International Gateway, and the Quad’s Infrastructure Coordination Group. To make sure efficient investments and keep away from duplication, the US, Europe, and India ought to align and coordinate their approaches.
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Linking transatlantic and Indo-Pacific initiatives is crucial to make sure that like-minded nations have the higher hand in growing an affirmative know-how agenda. India is the best bridge to the Indo-Pacific, given its deep ties with the transatlantic companions and with teams such because the BRICS. Moreover, because it holds the G20 presidency, India brings a world focus to multilateralize transatlantic initiatives. Setting the principles of the highway for know-how is a crew sport. Partnering with India is an opportune step to keep away from the fragmentation of worldwide know-how governance.
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