Diplomatist Special Report: West Asia - North Africa 2018 WANA 2018 - Page 6

Publisher's Note I ndia shares deep cultural, historical and civilizational links with West Asia and North Africa. Civilizational exchanges between these regions can be traced to the very beginning of the recorded history. There is a continuum of interactions between the two regions from the age old times to the shared belief in anti-colonialism and anti-terrorism in contemporary times. With the dawn of 20th century, the bilateral relations were further reinforced as the two reemerged from their dark colonial times towards new uncharted realities, building new bridges of understanding and synergies to deal with the common developmental problem and new challenges of 21st century. Regional security through talks and dialogue exchange forms the basic framework of the shared belief in our commitment to achieve, preserve and enhance international peace and security. For India, as far as West Asia and North Africa region is concerned, the later has become a part of our extended neighborhood and as such continued peace and stability in the region is in our strategic and diplomatic calculus. Indian experts and policymakers acknowledge the need to develop a holistic approach and strategy, one which seeks both to reinforce economic exchanges and to institutionalize the existing security cooperation. WANA region is currently undergoing the most turbulent political transition its history has even seen. Despite the changing political dynamics, bilateral relation with virtually every country of the region has been developing structurally and India has managed to insulate its national interests from the negative fall-out of regional crisis. India has recently increased its commitment to advance the mutually benefi cial political, economic and security ties with the region. New potential areas of cooperation include food security, regional security, counter-terrorism, climate change, renewable energy, pharmaceuticals, automobiles, infrastructure, power and renewable energy etc. This special report analyzes the past, present and future trajectories, geopolitical magnitudes, economic dimensions, transnational networks, food security and other facets of India's links with the West Asia and North Africa — a region that plays a dynamic role in India's security, economy and its future. Linda Brady Hawke Publisher