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France's Indo-Pacific strategy Parole d'expert, Vie Publique, June 15, 2024

This article has been extracted from the magazine Question internationales - n°118 - Avril-mai 2023.

The Indo-Pacific, a new theater of strategic rivalry between China and the United States, is of growing interest to France, where it defends its interests related to its vast maritime territory by promoting multilateralism and forging multiple partnerships in the region.



In 2019, France became the first European country to adopt a strategy for the Indo-Pacific. The vast Indo-Pacific region, extending from the eastern coasts of Africa to Oceania and encompassing both the Indian and Pacific Oceans, is identified as a crucial strategic zone for three main reasons: it has become the economic engine of the world, it is increasingly where international norms are being challenged, particularly in maritime affairs, and it is the arena where the future world order, shaped by Sino-American rivalry, is being determined.

France is undeniably a power of the Indo-Pacific, with overseas territories located in both oceans, home to about 1.5 million French citizens. Nearly 90% of its vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), the second largest in the world just behind that of the United States, is located there. Furthermore, France maintains vital economic interdependence with this region, which is traversed by maritime trade routes and digital connectivity networks essential to its security interests. Therefore, the preservation of a rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific contributes to maintaining a global geostrategic environment favorable to France’s national interests and its universalist ambition.



>>> The article is available in French on Vie Publique's website.

Emmanuel Macron Multilatéralisme stratégie indo-pacifique Chine France Indo-Pacifique