Jaishankar Urges India Inc to Consider National Security in China Deals

Indian businesses should use a "national security filter" when dealing with China.

  • Indian businesses should use a “national security filter” when dealing with China.
  • Jaishankar encourages sourcing and manufacturing within India for long-term benefits.
  • Concerns raised over economic “weaponisation” and political pressure through trade.

Indian businesses must consider national security when dealing with China, said External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar during a CII event. Amid the ongoing border tensions in eastern Ladakh, he emphasized the importance of using a “national security filter” in business propositions with China. Jaishankar pointed out that while not all trade with China is banned, Indian firms are encouraged to prioritize local sourcing and manufacturing.

“Would you do business with someone who has just barged into your drawing room and is trying to make a mess of your house fencing? You wouldn’t,” Jaishankar remarked, highlighting the common-sense approach to national security in business dealings.

Jaishankar also expressed concerns about the “weaponisation” of economic activities, noting how market shares, financial dominance, and technology tracking can be used to exert political pressure. He stressed the importance of trust and reliability in foreign policy, particularly in de-risking supply sources and collaborating on sensitive technologies. He cited ongoing dialogues with the US and the EU as examples of this approach.

India’s economic priorities must align with its strategic interests, Jaishankar added, emphasizing the need for accessing global resources to fuel growth. “An economy with India’s prospects must look at global resources seriously if we are to fuel our growth,” he said.