Strategies and approaches of EU countries to the Indo-Pacific region: Implications for Slovakia

CEIAS Publication: AIES Senior Advisor Dr. Alfred Gerstl and AIES Research Associate Nick Nieschalke contributed to the paper.



By Kristina Kironska, Alfred Gerstl, Renata Westlake, Nick Nieschalke, Valentin Hoffmann, Matej Šimalčík. 

This study aims to provide the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic with a systematic overview of the Indo-Pacific strategies of big and small European countries. The findings of this study will subsequently enable decision-makers to learn from best practices but also identify niches in other strategies that Slovakia can exploit.

The study starts with a brief analysis of why and how the new concept of ‘Indo-Pacific’ was coined in the early 2000s. It then outlines the geostrategic and geo-economic reasons why many Western and Indo-Pacific nations have issued specific Indo-Pacific strategies in the last decade. European countries and the European Union (EU) are latecomers in this process.

Our experts applied a content analysis on the European strategies. In addition to identifying key terms such as ‘rules-based order,’ ‘like-minded partners’ or ‘maritime security,’ the study also evaluates whether the strategies contain specific means of implementation.

The study provides a brief summary of the strategies of the EU and key countries and a table enabling a direct comparison of the strategies. Based on our analysis of the different strategies, we propose recommendations for key elements that an Indo-Pacific strategy of Slovakia (or other small states) should take into account.

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