Expanding India's maritime trade
For a long time, India looked at China with awe as the latter signed MoUs with Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and developed world-class modern seaports in these countries. Developing these ports needed heavy investment, expertise and experience, which the Chinese companies were able to bring together in completing these port projects internationally. India feared being encircled by the Chinese presence at all important ports in India's immediate neighbourhood. India's political sway in these countries could not withstand the lure of Chinese promise to develop their ports to the international standards. As if taking a cue from the Chinese initiatives, India too went out looking for similar projects worldwide.