Geopolitics of Development: A Study of the Impacts of IPI Pipeline on Regional Development

Document Type : Original Article


1 - Assistant Professor of Political Science, Imam Khomeini and Islamic Revolution Research Institute, Tehran, Iran

2 – M.A Student of Area Studies, Allameh Tabatabai University, Tehran, Iran


The present paper is an attempt to study the impacts of Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) pipeline on trilateral cooperation between Iran, Pakistan and India in the context of regional development. The pipeline can work both as a deterrent and a confidence-building measure, in a geopolitical set up where interstate and intrastate forces as well as extra-territorial forces are at work to undermine any attempt for regional cooperation aiming at flourishing of regional development. 
The political environment in South Asia is marked by an ambience of hope and anticipation. The most intensive diplomatic engagement has occurred between Pakistan and India. Three wars in 1947-48, 1965, and 1971 and a constant state of military preparedness on both sides of the border have marked six decades of bitter contest between India and Pakistan. Today, both the countries need a peaceful ambiance to concentrate on economic development of their nations. The IPI pipeline can provide an opportunity for both the countries to engage in a mutually beneficial economic project and begin a new phase in their bilateral relations on the one hand and enter into a trilateral relation with Iran on the other. Iran has the second largest gas reserves of the world at its disposal and is a major member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and hence can be a very effective party to this triangle. The engagement of the three countries in this giant gas project can pave the way for a dynamic regional cooperation. 
The data for the present paper has been collected through library research. The garnered data has been analyzed based on descriptive-historical-analytical method. The theoretical framework of the present study is Stephen Jones' Unified Field Theory of Political Geography (Jones, 1955), who maintains that geopolitical fields are just like magnetic fields and any change in one field leaves its impacts on other related geopolitical fields.
The hypothesis of this article indicates a direct relation between Obama's foreign policy and preventive action in U.S. strategy. The Obama's foreign policy is the independent variable and preventive strategy is the dependent variable and the theoretical framework is based on Agent-Structure approach.