‘90 per cent of world trade is being done on sea routes’
No nation that aspires for greatness can ignore its maritime interests, Chairman National Maritime Foundation and former Chief of Naval Staff Admiral (retd) Sureesh Mehta said.
Delivering the keynote address at the one-day seminar on “Maritime Developments to India’s East” organised by the NMF and the Eastern Naval Command in Visakhapatnam on Monday, he said that it was imperative that India shed its sea blindness and step out of its continental focus.
With 90 per cent of world trade being on the sea routes maritime focus is essential for energy security and protecting the economic interests of the nation that is fast emerging as a global power, the former Naval Chief said.
The seminar aimed at increasing the awareness on important maritime considerations developing on India’s Eastern horizons that would ultimately have a bearing upon the future of maritime security and stability in the region.
The NMF was contributing to policy studies and highlighting and promoting awareness on our maritime heritage, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command Vice Admiral Anil Chopra said welcoming the delegates, including eminent personalities and experienced speakers from strategic think tanks in the country and officers of the ENC and students from the GITAM University. He spoke on the capabilities of the ENC in line with India’s Look East policy and pointed out that the ENC was the largest geographical command in the Indian Armed Forces and the only one with nuclear powered platforms.
This is the first time that India is participating in the changes in the world geo-political scenario, director of NMF and Vice Admiral (retd) Pradeep Kaushiva said. In these changing times the challenge is not only from adversaries but also allies, he added.
Regional director NMF and former Rector of Andhra University A Prasanna Kumar was given a memento on the occasion of his demitting office as the head of the NMF Visakhapatnam Chapter. A large number of dignitaries, including former Indian ambassador to Japan H K Singh and Rear Admiral (retd) Raja Menon, attended the seminar.