Marcos PERESTRELLO (Portugal)

07 December 2022

NATO’s new Strategic Concept has highlighted the importance of the Indo-Pacific for Allied security and endorsed the growing collaboration with like-minded partners in the region. This partnership is becoming increasingly important today as the world’s geopolitical centre of gravity is shifting towards the Indo-Pacific region. 

The report explores the geopolitical landscape of the Indo-Pacific, marked by rising tensions and increased tendency to create competing blocs. The growing assertiveness of the People’s Republic of China and its challenge to the rules-based global order is arguably a major source of concern for Allies and their like-minded partners in the region. The report therefore suggests that the key priority area for co-operation with these partners is on global norm-setting, to ensure that the rules and standards governing digital and other emerging technologies are compatible with the values of the Euro-Atlantic community. NATO should continue reinforcing its political dialogue and practical co-operation with Indo-Pacific partners, not least in order to benefit from their unique insights and expertise on regional matters. The Rapporteur argues that, in the medium term, NATO as an organisation is unlikely to be involved in major maritime missions to project stability in the Indo-Pacific. However, Allies with substantial maritime capabilities – particularly the United States, France and the United Kingdom – have a role to play in advancing the concept of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific, in a coordinated and inclusive manner. 

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