What do you understand by Quad arrangement? Discuss its motive. What are the major issues Quad arrangements is facing? (150Words/10Marks)

Mentor’s comment:

Explain about Quad Arrangement as a security dialogue between four nations. Explain about its prime motives and general perception about its initiations. Talk about the major problems associated with member countries which will halt the progress of Quad. Finally add conclusion.


Model Answer:

  • The quad arrangement also known as Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QSD) is the informal grouping of four nations USA, Australia, Japan and India aiming towards trade, economic and security tie which is centered and revolves around South and South-East Asia along with other Asia Pacific countries.
  • The dialogue was initiated in the year 2007 by the representatives of four countries which were paralleled by Joint Military Exercises of an unprecedented scale titled Exercise Malabar. Following the withdrawal of Australia apparently not to provoke China, the dialogue was ceased and started again in 2010 with the regime change in Australia.
  • However, the process of dialogue was in loop and recently, the representatives of these countries again initiated the process by holding first of its official meeting in Manila on the sideline of ASEAN Summit.

Motives of Quad Arrangement:

  • The prime motive of quad arrangement is to expand membership by endorsing and following international laws on water, freedom of navigation, hassle free trade, parity in trade partnership, anti-piracy & anti-trafficking, help in any unprecedented disaster and to invest and financially support the targeted countries in the region.
  • The ulterior motive behind this is seen by many to form a strategic partnership deal against China’s rise in the region. As China has often been accused of unilaterally trying to alter the power axis in the region (especially the Indian Ocean region) and change the international rule based order in its own manner, hence the arrangement is seen to counter China’s assertiveness in the region.

Major issues Quad Arrangement is facing:

  • The official motive of this Quad Arrangement is still in illusion and is yet to be firmly decided: whether, maritime security, connectivity, countering China’s moves in the Indo-Pacific and on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), or a combination of all three. This brings a confusing situation as some members favouring free and open Indo-Pacific region while some taking back steps on maritime security.
  • All the countries of the Quadrilateral have major interests in China economically (being their major trade partner) and yet have major security concerns about China. So, there is a need to keep a balance between controlling Chinese rising aggression and, keeping trade relations with China in parallel diplomatically.
  • Stability Concern of USA and its policy towards Asia which is fluctuating and has no surety of concrete future at present. In the case of Australia, there are concerns about the continued calls for accommodation with China.
  • Caution about India’s reliability stems from its emphasis on strategic autonomy and lingering hesitation about cooperating with the United States and its allies.
  • Rivalry with China will also expose India to criticisms from other neighboring countries for seeking external help and involving third parties in the matter. With the political deficit that is persisting in the Indian subcontinent, there is a need to build up healthy partnership with China for its development.
  • Worries about Japan stepping up can be traced to the question of whether its leadership can overcome public preference for a pacifist policy.
  • With regard to the United States, the others are uncertain about the Trump administration’s approach to the region, and remain concerned about a potential China-U.S. G-2. Finally, there continue to be differences within governments about the value of the quadrilateral.


  • Quadrilateral dialogue not only has a security purpose but also focuses on achieving political and economic objectives. However, the involvement of India in this and also the involvement of two external powers may appear to give a negative impression on other parties. It is necessary for these parties to tread carefully before concluding any dialogue and cooperation not aggression is the true word for the Quad initiative.


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