Reading: India’s Vaccine Diplomacy and Changing Geopolitics in the Global South


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India’s Vaccine Diplomacy and Changing Geopolitics in the Global South


S. S. Nisayuru Ariyawardana

The University of Kelaniya, LK
About S. S. Nisayuru
Department of International Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences
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Vaccine diplomacy has developed new dynamics of geopolitics between the world’s superpowers as a result of global COVID-19 pandemic vaccination. This study contributes to the existing body of literature on geopolitics in the global South while focusing on changing aspects of geopolitics resulting in India's vaccine diplomacy. It primarily determines the geopolitical agendas behind vaccine diplomatic practices of India, which is used as tool of soft power to influence the internal affairs of the countries in the global South. As a result, this study reveals the emerging dynamics of geopolitics which resulted in India’s vaccine diplomacy in the means of COVID-19 cooperation, including South Asia, driven by the power competition between the world’s superpowers such as the USA, the USSR and China. The study’s data and information are based on a mixed method which is secondary qualitative and quantitative facts that were gleaned via archival research. These findings discovered that India’s ‘Neighborhood First’ vaccine policy has extended to South Asian countries while ranging its vaccine cooperation towards the developed and developing nations in the global South and beyond, under the ‘Vaccine Maitri’ program. Behind these vaccine campaigns, India is engaged in a geopolitical struggle over the global South against the USA, the USSR and China in place of its geopolitical agenda with the hopes of authenticating the solitary authority as the regional power beyond Asia.  India's ultimate goal of regional supremacy has now given rise to a geopolitical conflict as world superpowers have launched their vaccine diplomatic campaigns against India in the global South. These tensions that underlie India's vaccine diplomacy are currently driving significant changes in regional geopolitics in the global South.
How to Cite: Ariyawardana, S. S. N. (2022). India’s Vaccine Diplomacy and Changing Geopolitics in the Global South. Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities Review, 7(3), 142–161. DOI:
Published on 11 Nov 2022.
Peer Reviewed


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