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India ranks 4th in Asia-Pacific on power index, pegged as ‘giant of the future’ (Relevant for GS Prelims, GS Mains Paper II; Economics)

How did Indian perform?
India has ranked fourth out of 25 nations in the Asia-Pacific region on an index that measures their overall power, with the country being pegged as a “giant of the future” but trails behind in indicators of defence networks and economic relationships.

Who issues the report?
The Lowy Institute Asia Power Index measures power across 25 countries and territories in the Asia-Pacific region, reaching as far west as Pakistan, as far north as Russia, and as far into the Pacific as Australia, New Zealand and the US.

Basis of index
A country’s overall power is its weighted average across eight measures of power—economic resources, military capability, resilience, future trends, diplomatic influence, economic relationships, defence networks and cultural influence.

Key findings
Among the key findings from the inaugural 2018 index are that US remains the pre-eminent power in Asia, while China, the emerging superpower, is rapidly closing in on US. “Three of the world’s four largest economies are in Asia, and the fourth, the United States, is a Pacific power. By 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in Asia, compared with just over a tenth in the West,” the Institute said.

Specific parameters
India is ranked fourth on the parameters economic resources, military capability, diplomatic influence and fifth on resilience. It scores well on the parameters of cultural influence and future trends, ranking third in both. However, it scores low on the measure of economic relationships, ranking seventh and in defence networks, ranking 10th.

Lowy said economic relationships is measured in terms of the capacity of states or territories to exercise influence through economic interdependencies; measured in terms of trade relations, investment ties and economic diplomacy.

Defence networks are defence partnerships that act as force multipliers of military capability; measured through assessments of alliances, non-allied partnerships and arms transfers. Cultural influence is defined as the ability to shape international public opinion through cultural appeal and interaction; measured in terms of cultural projection, information flows and people exchanges.

Future trends are the projected distribution of economic, military and demographic resources in 2030, which play into perceptions of power today; measured in terms of GDP, military expenditure and working-age population forecasts.

(Adapted from Livemint)

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