A group of US Senators has written to India asking to join the Blue Dot Network.
The Blue Dot Network
- Blue Dot is a US-led collaboration with Australia and Japan that supports private-sector-led infrastructure financing opportunities in response to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
- It was formally announced on 4 November 2019 at the Indo-Pacific Business Forum in Bangkok, Thailand on the sidelines of the 35th ASEAN Summit.
- It is led by the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, Japan Bank for International Cooperation, and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia.
- It is expected to serve as a global evaluation and certification system for roads, ports and bridges with a focus on the Indo-Pacific region.
- It is a multi-stakeholder initiative to bring together governments, the private sector and civil society to promote high-quality, trusted standards for global infrastructure development.
Fundamental difference between BRI and Blue Dot
- It is planned as a direct counter to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
- While the former involves direct financing, giving countries in need immediate short-term relief, the latter is not a direct financing initiative and therefore may not be what some developing countries need.
- The question is whether Blue Dot offering first-world solutions to third-world countries.
- Secondly, Blue Dot will require coordination among multiple stakeholders when it comes to grading projects.
- Given the past experience of Quad, the countries involved in it are still struggling to put a viable bloc. Therefore, it remains to be seen how Blue Dot fares in the long run.