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Approach:

  1. Intro on IPEF.
  2. Mention the 4 pillars.
  3. Mention its significance.
  4. Conclusion.

In May 2022, before the Quad leaders’ summit in Tokyo, the United States launched the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF). The proposed economic bloc has 13 members so far and more countries are expected to join. Apart from the four Quad members, IPEF includes Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The 4 pillars of IPEF:

  • Trade: It will include digital economy and emerging technologies, labour commitments, environment, trade facilitation, transparency and good regulatory practices. It will also include corporate accountability, standards on cross-border data flows and data localisations.
  • Supply Chain Resilience: To develop ‘a first-of-its-kind supply chain agreement’ that would anticipate and prevent disruptions.
  • Clean energy and decarbonisation: It will include agreements on ‘high-ambition commitments’ such as renewable energy targets, carbon removal purchasing commitments, energy efficiency standards, and new measures to combat methane emissions.
  • Tax and anti-corruption: It includes commitments to enact and enforce ‘effective tax, anti-money laundering, anti-bribery schemes’.

Significance:

  • It is a salient attempt to allow countries to decouple from Chinese over-dependence. The framework will strengthen the existing free and open rules-based global order.
  • It will help the S regain its dominant position in the geopolitics which it has been losing to China and Russia. The aim is to reclaim economic leadership in East Asia and the ASEAN region without giving away concessions.
  • It will help in setting the rules for the digital economy, ensuring secure and resilient supply chains. It will also play a pivotal role in raising standards for transparency, fair taxation, and anti-corruption.
  • It complements the “Quad Plus” process. It brings together seven critical countries of ASEAN, all Quad states, and dialogue partners.
  • It will counter the other regional groupings like, the TTP, the CPTPP and the RCEP.
  • It will also improve mitigation and adaptation efforts towards climate change by helping in inducing major investments necessary in clean energy infrastructure and the clean energy transition.

India is committed to a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region. It is keen to collaborate with partner countries under the IPEF and work towards advancing regional connectivity and integration for continued growth, peace, and prosperity.

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