Q. Examine how the recent political turmoil in Algeria will have an impact on the region and its relations with India. (250 words)17 Apr, 2019 GS Paper 2 International Relations
- Give brief introduction of recent protest in Algeria.
- Analyze the impact of political turmoil in region i.e. Arab and Europe.
- Analyze the impact of political turmoil on Algeria’s relation with India.
- Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika resigned from power, after 20-year rule over the North African nation.
- After recent massive protest by youths in Algeria, he has decided to step down and withdrew his candidature from coming elections which were also suspended.
Impact on the region:
- Instability in Arab: Algeria’s 42 million population is second only to Egypt’s in the Arab world. Any political instability in Algeria may have domino effect in region, similar to ‘Arab Spring’.
- It is an OPEC member, a major gas supplier to Europe, hence protracted uncertainty in Algeria can affect Europe by disrupting energy supplies.
- Impact on Europe’s economy: Algeria is a large importer of goods ranging from automobiles to pharmaceuticals from Europe. Any unrest in Algeria will have negative growth in trade from Europe.
- Surge in immigration: can have potential fallout for European countries due to which extreme right wing and islamophobia can get deeply entrenched having consequences for long term peace in the region.
- Increasing threat of radicalization: There are four million Algerians living in Europe. Due to political instability, religious extremism may grow; leading to further instability and threat in the region.
Impact of political turmoil on Algeria’s relation with India
- Strategic relation: The amenable relations bilateral relationship with India may be impacted
- Economic relations: Bilateral economic ties between two countries are robust and growing. Algeria is an important market for India’s foodstuff, automobiles, farm machinery, pharmaceuticals, mobiles and cosmetics. Any instability can cause disruption in economic ties potentially causing loss in exports for India.
- Energy Security: It is also India’s source for strategic commodities, especially hydrocarbons. Any adverse relation can potentially harm India’s energy security as well as revenue from refining etc.
- At the political level, Algeria has been one of the few members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation to have consistently supported India’s case against terrorism. Thus India needs a supporter in OIC to amplify its stand on terrorism and future successor’s position will have considerable impact as to how India’s case against terrorism is dealt in OIC.
- The peaceful protest for democracy in Algeria is encouraging and widely supported by citizens.
- India can play a vital role in ensuring that Algeria’s socio-political transition is smooth by helping the country with institution-building and infrastructure.