07 June 2017

News Story: The Growing Significance of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Andaman and Nicobar Islands shown in RED BOX
(Click Image to Enlarge)
By Karan Tripathi and Gaurav Rana

The rise of two global powers hailing from the same region has made the Indian Ocean, more specifically the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (ANI), a hotly pursued region. 

With China already making great advances on its path to military superiority and control over the trade route via waters in the South China Sea and via land through the One Belt One Road initiative, it is imperative that Indian government understands the strategic role the ANI, a chain of 572 islands under its sovereignty, in helping her maintain a dominant role in the Indian Ocean.

Maritime Trade

The northernmost part of the archipelago is only 22 nautical miles away from Myanmar, the southernmost point of the Nicobar Islands, is only 90 nautical miles away from Indonesia. The Ten Degree Channel which falls under the Exclusive Economic Zone of India is a conduit for more than 60,000 commercial vessels each year, thereby making the ANI an indispensable region for India’s national security.

More than 80 percent of the world's maritime oil trade passes through the Indian Ocean, and it is an important conduit for trade for comprehensive world economies such as Japan, Australia, China and India. More than 70 percent of India's trade value and 80 percent of India’s crude oil requirements pass through the region. 

Read the full story at MarEx