Assessing the Ability of a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” Strategy: To Maintain the Status-Quo in the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans

Gaurav Raja Dahal


China’s rising power and challenge to the status quo of the rules-based international order had led several nations, primarily Japan and the United States, to pursue a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” strategy. However, such a strategy was predicated upon multilateral support.  Was such a strategy viable?  The research focuses on this fundamental question, applying various IR theories to the strategy.  This paper hypothesizes that if multilateralism was successful, the FOIP strategy was viable. The significance of this research is that it may suggest necessary changes to the existing FOIP strategy or may validate its trajectory.  Either way, the research provides both academic and policy significance.


Indo-Pacific; multilateralism; international order; middle powers; balancing theories

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Journal of South Asian Studies
ISSN: 2307-4000 (Online), 2308-7846 (Print)
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