Blue-Dot network: An infrastructural development initiative

The growing globalization has promoted the need to develop connectivity with multiple nations. China had rolled its ambitious ‘Belt and road initiative’ in 2013, that aims to develop infrastructure to improve connectivity and cooperation among different nations. Nearly 70 countries and international organizations of Asia, Europe and Africa are covered under its ambit. Many believe it to be China’s trending strategy to spread its dominance. Numerous concerns have been raised since China is an ally of Pakistan. With the recent ‘fruitful’ bilateral talks of China with Italy, even America has raised concerns like many other countries since they fear that Chinese and allies influence will spread more in Europe since Italy has already ratified the Silk Road initiative. This makes the European arms and defense bases more vulnerable. India has its own concern with OBOR as China-Pak route makes the Indo border more prone to mobility. 

US President Donald Trump visited India and various key initiatives and bilateral talks were held. One of the significant areas of discussion was blue dot network. The blue-dot network is a “multi-stakeholder initiative to bring together governments, private sector and civil society to promote high-quality, trusted standards for global infrastructural development”. Primarily, it is a proposal to cover infrastructure and development projects across the region and other countries. The initiative is brain child of USA who has already been successful in incorporating Japan and Australia in it journey to counter the OBOR. The initiative will evaluate projects on various parameters which includes level of public consultations, transparency in funding, debt traps and basic environmental norms. The projects which fulfill the norms shall get “blue-dot”, which will enable them to attract private funding and shall not be dependent on state funding only.

US wants India to support the proposal as part of its Indo-Pacific strategy. As for now, India has not signed up the proposal and not many insights are available in this regard.  

Shalini Singh

PGDM Batch 2019-21