Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests

Associate Papers

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.

Saudi Arabia and Qatar: A Tribal Feud with Regional and Global Implications

13 June 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

The Saudi-Qatari feud is not good for regional stability and security. The anti-Qatar action is a clumsy tactic in the Saudi competition with Iran for regional hegemony that may signal the end of the Gulf Co-operation Council. Iran is unlikely to be deterred and will continue its ascendancy as a regional hegemon unaffected by the tribal squabbles across the Gulf.

Myths, Perceptions and Reality: The Allocation of Marine Resources in the Arafura and Timor Seas – Part Two

Australia maintains that the maritime boundary should reflect the extent of Australia’s natural continental shelf, not the median line between it and Timor-Leste. Suggestions that Canberra has robbed Dili of its oil revenue and been unfair in the negotiations of at least three boundary agreements are mischievous and opportunistic. A protracted legal battle with Australia over the Greater Sunrise hydrocarbon deposits runs counter to the economic and security interests of Timor-Leste.

Myths, Perceptions and Reality: The Allocation of Marine Resources in the Arafura and Timor Seas – Part One

Despite generous financial support, there is a perception that Australia has been unfair to Timor-Leste in the allocation of the revenue that may be accrued from the hydrocarbon reserves in the Timor Sea. In fact, the humanitarian aid and generous assistance given by Australia has been mirrored in the provisions of the various maritime boundary agreements reached with its northern neighbours. At the same time, the geographical and legal bases by which Australia claims sovereign rights to the resources on and under its natural continental shelf are clear and unambiguous and reflect the geographical location of the resources.

Redefining Modi’s India?

20 April 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

What level of Hinduisation is emerging in India under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and in what direction might his 2019 Election Manifesto attempt to steer the country? Conflicting ideologies may see paradoxes emerge between the government – in particular Modi’s “Idea” of India – and the Constitution, that lead to difficult questions about the Constitutional commitment to secularism and the practice of Hinduisation.

The Drone Revolution and Australian Agriculture – Part Two: Case Studies and Practical Benefits

Detailed industry analysis has identified agriculture as one of the most promising fields for drone based applications. The ability for farmers to make sound business decisions based upon real-time high quality data that is available at a reasonable cost is essential to a successful modern agricultural enterprise. In Part Two of this FDI Associate Paper, Mr Geoff Trowbridge discusses in specific detail the benefits drones can provide to agriculture.

The Drone Revolution and Australian Agriculture – Part One

High technology, unmanned aerial systems or drones are increasingly moving from military to commercial applications and bringing with them changes that are revolutionising a broad range of industry sectors. In this two-part FDI Associate Paper, Mr Geoff Trowbridge of ScientificAerospace firstly discusses the general, high technology innovations drones are bringing to a wide range of applications and secondly the specific benefits drones can bring to agricultural production.

India’s Security Concerns in the Indian Ocean Region: A Critical Analysis

4 April 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

India needs to adopt a more structured and holistic approach if it is to successfully address the diverse range of security challenges confronting it in the Indian Ocean Region. A long-term maritime policy of working in close strategic co-operation with the likes of the United States, Japan and Australia, together with the states in its maritime neighbourhood, will be required.

Pakistan-Iran Bilateral Relations: More Growth, But Not Close – Part Two: Saudi Arabia and Balochistan

28 March 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

There is potential for further deepening of Pakistan-Iran defence ties now that the economic and financial sanctions against Iran have been removed. Islamabad will have to be very careful in how it handles this matter, however, and will need to keep in mind how it would be seen by Saudi Arabia. Domestic factors, notably sectarian differences and the continuing unrest in Balochistan, will also affect the deepening of the relationship with Tehran.

Pakistan-Iran Bilateral Relations: More Growth, But Not Close – Part One: Afghanistan, India and China

23 March 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

Pakistan and Iran have worked together to bring stability to Afghanistan, although they do not see eye-to-eye on a future role for the Taliban. There is much potential in their relationship, especially with regard to the export of energy and Pakistan will progressively deepen its relationship with Iran. That relationship will also be informed by Pakistan’s relationship with China, its interests in Afghanistan and Central Asia, and its ongoing enmity with India.

Is There Light at the End of the Baloch Tunnel? Part Two: The View from India

9 March 2017 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

India’s Balochistan policy should be based on a clear-headed assessment of its stakes and its capability to intervene meaningfully. The Baloch issue should not be used by New Delhi as a bargaining chip or a quick-fix to any of the problems that it may have with Pakistan because such short-termism will harm both the Baloch cause and India’s overall interests.

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.

Donate Now and Support Independent Research

Donate now to help us provide independent research and advice on global issues facing Australia