The “Indo-Pacific” is a key concept in today’s rapidly-changing geopolitical landscape, gradually displacing “Asia-Pacific,” the conceptual framework that dominated geostrategic thinking in the region after the end of the Cold War. The latter implied an effort to integrate the People’s Republic of China (PRC) into a cooperative arrangement in the Pacific. The Indo-Pacific, by contrast, defines Asia with its coastal belt surrounded by two oceans and implicitly leaves out continental Asia (“Eurasia”) – mainly Russia and China – from the equation. Ultimately, this is a geostrategic response to the backsliding of the world into two great blocs – the Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific on the one hand, and Eurasia on the other, with the “Global South” (formerly the “Third World”) in between.
With the geopolitical center of gravity shifting to the East, the concept of the Indo-Pacific represents a similar vision to that of the Euro-Atlantic community in post-World War Two Europe: A collective defense of shared democratic values and open societies against the expansionism of authoritarian regimes. The preservation of a “free and open Indo-Pacific” is in the inherent interest of like-minded (if geographically distant) countries, and thus, must remain high on the agenda for the Czech Republic and the entire EU.
Full text in PDF.