Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Bhutan and China last week signed an MoU for expediting boundary negotiations where the two countries are likely to discuss Doklam. The MoU may cause ripple effects for India.

According to experts, the MoU is a sign that Bhutan is becoming increasingly independent of India. “Several strategic observations can be made about the Chinese-Bhutanese three-step roadmap MoU. First, the two nations have a political desire to peacefully resolve this issue.

Second, Bhutan is behaving increasingly independent of India. Third, the aforesaid might be due to concerns about India’s regional policy. Fourth, this is in spite of those two cooperating during the 2017 Doklam crisis. The fifth is significant since it suggests that if asymmetrically sized countries like those two can make progress on border issues, then there’s no reason why similarly sized China and India can’t,” Russia-based analyst Andrew Korybko said.

According to Korybko, the MoU is likely to influence India’s northern policy. “It might influence India to become more flexible in talks with China, which could stabilise this vast frontier and reduce the fear of rivalry in the two landlocked nations between them (Nepal, Bhutan). It might inspire India to become more recalcitrant towards compromising with China.”


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