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Post-Cold War: Towards regionalism and India’s ‘look east’ policy

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Chapter Summary

The South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) grouping of which India is a member has not been able to effectively promote intra-regional trade. While the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement is still to be fully implemented, individual ASEAN members such as Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand have managed to increase their bilateral trade with India. India embarked on its 'Look East' Policy (LEP) in the post-Cold War era because geo-strategic considerations made it more conducive to foster closer relations between India and Singapore. India and Singapore signed a Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) called the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) on 30 June 2005. This agreement covers a range of goods such as information technology, banking and the movement of professionals. Key aspects for closer economic collaboration between Singapore and India could hinge on using the 'Batam Model' that resulted in gains for Singapore and Indonesia.

Keywords: 'Look East' Policy (LEP); Batam Model; Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA); Free Trade Agreements (FTAs); India; Malaysia; post-Cold War; Singapore; South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC)



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