kazi, aftab


Interdependence or a New Political Order in Eurasia: A Geopolinomic Perspective

The post-Soviet geopolitical order in broader Eurasia is still evolving. Evaluation of emerging trends in terms of regional energy trade, politico-economic spheres and, evolving geopolitical changes in both Mackinder’s Heartland and Spykman’s Rimland indicates the emerging Eurasian interdependence might take another twenty years or so to materialize into a political order. 

The Central Eurasia oriented policy issues deriving from unilateralism vs. multilateralism debates largely related to the increasing role of China, Russia, India and EU on the world stage and, grand chess/new great game euphemisms together with democratic messianism appear to represent Cold War -oriented sovietologist/russianist worldviews. 

Central Eurasia oriented perspectives will fit very well into the order, but are missing.  Apprehension over the alternative oil/gas pipelines, trade and transit-routes and struggle for influence in the resource rich Post-Soviet space has overshadowed considerations related to the historical geopolitical psychology and political cultures of Central Eurasia (Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan).  Indeed, the land locked states have been unable to initiate alternatives to their Soviet Era regional interdependence, emerging platforms under SCO, CIS, CSTO and CEEC, etc. and proposals towards the establishment of Customs Union and a Eurasian Union (long way though) under the spatial geopolitical and economic influence of China and Russia together with Central Eurasia’s balancing location, as the paper argues, indicate an inward looking region-specific economic/foreign policy tendencies reflecting a gradually evolving new trade-based Eurasian geopolinomic realm. 

‘Although “new geopolitics” identifies the post-Soviet realities to a some extent, never before in history, complexities to explain omnipresent issues such as the competition over the alternative energy corridors, spatially oriented transit-route politics involving regional and cross-continental trade, possible exports of electricity and water, geopolitics of the climate change, cross-continental terrorism and geostationary-space security, exclusively experienced by this vast region simply cannot be explained existing frameworks in political realism. 

Therefore, within the framework of region-specific geopolinomics that is substantiated with at least two historical analogies as a model of international relations in modern Eurasia, one ancient and other of medieval times, this paper differentiates between geopolitics/geoeconomics and geopolinomics and conceptualizes at length the nature and processes of newly emerging interdependence thus, a new political order in Eurasia. That the geopolinomic developments in Eurasia will also have considerable impact on Central and South Asia in terms of regional conflict resolution and possibilities of new transit-routes for new oil and gas pipelines, besides the cross-regional and intercontinental trade with highlighting issues related to trade differentiation and specialization. This study also demonstrates that the cross-continental trade of Central and South Asia in various historical time-periods, that the newly romanticized silk-routes were not only land-based, but also seaborne.

Geopolinomics is a spatially oriented region-specific analytical model that identifies hitherto ignored historic economic and cultural links to play an equally important role in the concurrent geopolitical environment. Paper demonstrates how and why the new geopolitics does not seem to be working vis-à-vis the regionally oriented spatial geopolinomics in terms of energy pipelines and trade/transit routes.

Friday 26 October 11.15-13:15 Panels VIII, Panel 20 Geopolitical Aspects of Competition (Hall 7)