Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests

Indian Ocean

The Indian Ocean is critical to global trade and food and energy security. Resources increasingly are being exploited by its littoral and island states. It is also a stage for the pursuit of global strategic and regional military and security interests.

Mohammed bin Salman’s Saudi Arabia: A Royal Revolution

Saudi Arabia is undergoing a revolution in its leadership, economy and social structure. It is unusual in that the impetus for change is coming from the very top, with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman implementing remarkable reforms at the behest of his father, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. Even at this early stage, the unfolding royal revolution is having a major impact upon the kingdom, the region and beyond.

Indonesia: Does Democracy Deliver?

The appeal of populism could influence the tactics used in the presidential elections in 2019 and potentially weaken fundamental democratic processes in Indonesia.

A Good Year For India? Yes, But…

As 2017 comes to an end, India’s foreign policy could be said to have enjoyed more successes than otherwise, but much remains to be done domestically.

Hanging by a Thread: Timor-Leste Government Losing Grip on Power

The ruling coalition in Timor-Leste is likely to dissolve if it is not able to secure the passage through parliament of its legislative programme. If that happens, a new coalition will have to be negotiated or another round of parliamentary elections held.

Airman on a Short Fuse? Indian Air Chief Speaks on Surgical Strikes on Pakistani Nuclear Sites

Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa’s recent statement was primarily aimed at a domestic audience. It was, for the most part, viewed as such by Pakistan and is an example of the truism that, in the Subcontinent, appearing weak is more dangerous than actually being weak.

Pakistan and Home-Grown Terror: A No-Win Situation

Pakistan’s use of militant groups to achieve its goals in Afghanistan and India has served to degrade its relationship with the US, increase its dependence on China and place it in deeper trouble than ever before.

Indonesian Foreign Policy: Blind Spots, Stress Points and Potential Pitfalls

A growing Indonesia will be confronted by numerous challenges in the years ahead. Among those challenges are Indonesia’s leadership role in ASEAN, its position as a Muslim beacon of democracy and the need to reduce its dependence on China by broadening its economic relationships with other countries. The appeal of populist policies and phantom threats that distract officials from addressing deeper foreign policy issues must also be addressed.

Indonesia: Fire Count at Record Low for 2017

Higher rainfall helped to alleviate the fire season but some credit is owed to the Indonesian Government which should continue to focus on preventative measures.

Implications of the Chinese Communist Party’s 19th Congress: Part Two: Some Consequences of China’s New Foreign Policy

In this, the concluding part of his examination of the 19th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, Research Analyst Lindsay Hughes examines Beijing’s message and some of its international ramifications. Apart from examining some of China’s international policies that stem from that Congress, he also looks at some of the effects of the Belt and Road Initiative on the international community and, more specifically, India.

Implications of the Chinese Communist Party’s 19th Congress: Part One: Xi Consolidates Power

The recently-concluded Congress of the Chinese Communist Party saw President Xi consolidate his power and set China on a revised and ambitious path, one perceived as more becoming of a superpower. Such a move also presents risks for the region and for China itself.

Publication Guide

  • Associate papers are primary source assessments written by FDI associates. The assessment topics range from regional bilateral relationships and opportunities and challenges in our neighbouring countries.

  • Feature interviews are interviews conducted by an FDI Research Manager. Interview topics range from the sustainability of our planet to the improved provision of emergency food aid.

  • Normally issued in hardcopy, these represent a comprehensive study of one of FDI’s four research areas.

  • Strategic alerts are priority current intelligence items. We provide these alerts when events such as military deployments or foreign election results occur.

  • A 1500 to 3000 word, single topic assessment.

  • A number of short articles addressing current intelligence topics, issued each week.

  • A record of discussions resulting from a single, or series of, roundtable conferences.

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