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What Impact Does the War between Russia and Ukraine Have on India

The war between Russia and Ukraine is one of the most discussed topics worldwide, and there are several reasons for it:

  1. Nobody can predict how long this armed conflict will last.
  2. This war has many possible outcomes, and every single of them is likely to happen.
  3. The confrontation is of significant importance for every country in the world arena, not because of the change in the political map that the war between Russia and Ukraine can provoke, but also because of the export issues.

Although India and Ukraine are kilometers away from each other, they established a strong partnership in export and import. However, the war between Russia and Ukraine led to the decline of Ukraine’s export volumes.

Before the conflict, Ukraine was the world’s leader in oil export. For example, from 2021 to 2022, Ukrainian companies produced 6,45 million tons of oil, making 30,5% of the world’s oil volume. It makes the country the biggest exporter of oil. At the beginning of the armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the Indian government did not expect to face significant problems because of Ukraine’s reduced oil export. However, the shortage of oil and wheat led to a rise in customer inflation in the Republic of India at 6%.

It is expected that in the nearest future, only the remains of oil stored in stocks will be available. Hence, the rise in oil prices will lead to a corresponding increase in the prices of other goods that contain it. Moreover, manufacturers will place the rising costs on consumers, which could provoke a decline in money’s purchasing power.

Ukraine is the largest exporter of oil and one of the leading figures in wheat export. Although such countries as Egypt, Indonesia, and Turkey, which are Ukraine’s main wheat buyers, will be mainly impacted by the wheat crisis, the increase in prices of consumer goods will affect the whole world. Such goods as bread or noodles face the highest rise in prices.

This situation allows India to broaden its markets for export. For example, Egypt plans to buy the next batch of wheat from the Indian Republic. However, such growth in export can lead to a shortage of wheat and wheat-based products in the country’s local markets.

Not only foodstuffs will change prices. Such energy carriers as gas, petrol, and coal are also expected to become more expensive. In the Republic of India, the growth in prices of energy carriers will lead to an inflation rise. As a matter of fact, inflation is already at the top of the central bank’s target range.

Therefore, along with negative impacts, such as an evident rise in costs of groceries and energy sources, India will face several positive outcomes like expanding export markets.

However, the war between the Russian Federation and Ukraine does not only bring buying-selling issues to the central light. The armed conflict managed to change the political picture in the world arena. Currently, there are only two sides, and every country has to choose its own – to support Russia or Ukraine. Different viewpoints on the matter could lead to a degradation in international relations between certain countries. Hence, India had to make its choice as well.

The Republic of India is reserved in its opinion about the situation between Russia and Ukraine. Moreover, India called for peaceful negotiation and a diplomatic way of conflict solution. There are several reasons for the lack of criticism of Russia’s actions.

Russia is one of India’s greatest importers of armament and military equipment. Moreover, India’s government is close to the White House of the United States and the Kremlin. Although the Republic of India has a more intimate relationship with the USA, it does not want to lose a friend in the face of Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.

It is important for the Indian government to maintain the current relationship with Russia because it seems that the Russian Federation has changed its political interests. For the last several years Kremlin has been paying more attention to China and Pakistan and has become more interested in the economic and political partnership with these countries. It seems India has to stick to its connection to Vladimir Putin so as not to lose it completely.

However, the Republic of India has been trying to expand its cooperation with western countries and building a closer strategic partnership with the United States, including defense matters. India has supported the unofficial partnership among the US, Japan, and Australia that could be a counterweight to China’s growing impact.

Indian leaders can now clearly understand that they have to choose one side. Their indecision in the matter of the Russia-Ukraine conflict endangers the existing political relationships between India and the West.

Correspondingly, the demolition of political and defensive partnerships with the United States may be crucial for India regarding protection from China. Earlier, the US government concentrated on the danger coming from China, which was giving India an influential associate against the Chinese Republic. However, with the start of this crisis between Russia and Ukraine, the focus changed to the European region, and the USA lowered its level of hostility towards India’s Eastern neighbor.

Russia, China, and Iran have conducted joint naval training in the Indian ocean. Moreover, Nepal allowed China to build railway and automobile lines through its northern regions. Bhutan gave China a part of its territory. Hence, these facts give the Chinese Republic an undeniable advantage in any future armed conflict between India and its neighbor. In this case, India shouldn’t lose support from the West and the United States.

Hence, the war between Russia and Ukraine influences India in many ways, even though Ukraine is not the closest partner for the Indian Republic. Moreover, the Indian government needs to make its final decision and choose its side because, at the moment, the country is placed between two fires – Russia and the West. India needs to decide which side would be more beneficial for the country in the future and what side’s interests support India’s interests as well. 

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