Ah, India… The land of wonders, don’t you think so?
Well, if you’ve ever been to this country or maybe you’re only thinking about visiting it, then you’re bound to fall in love with it.
On a larger scale (that is when we’re talking about whole nations, not just tourists.), there’s a lot of love for India as well.
So which countries share affection with the land of spices? Well, there’s…
Relations between India and Afghanistan have been friendly for decades.
India was among the first to recognize the republic in the 1980s. And since then, they’ve been really close, giving each other a helping hand when needed.
Afghanistan actually knows that it can always rely on India as a partner and perhaps even a mentor because it was its greatest helper in troublesome times.
In peaceful times, India hasn’t neglected its partner either, building schools and roads, sponsoring scholarships, and providing other aid.
In 2007 and 2008, the government of Afghanistan even called India the country’s “most cherished partner,” and a “brother country” to their own.
If that’s not true affection, then I don’t know what is.
Sharing a 1,020 mile-long border, India and Myanmar (or, as it was formerly called, Burma) have strong historical bonds, so naturally.
They can’t but have at least some kind of relationship. “Some kind” isn’t enough to describe these two nations, though.
Because they have a really warm friendship between them. Despite the troubles, Myanmar had to endure the 20th century.
India has always been there for its neighbor, forever supporting and inspiring them.
And since 1993, the relations between the countries have been steadily improving. Today, India is the largest buyer of Burmese goods.
And they’ve even built a huge three-sided highway connecting India, Myanmar, and Thailand.
Hey, friendship-supporting infrastructure that’s pretty awesome.
What comes to your mind when you think of Maldives?
Beautiful blue waters, cozy little bungalows, warm tropical sun. Ah, yes, a true island paradise.
Well, this country also happens to be located in the Indian Ocean, and it has a very special relationship with India.
To start with, India was the first to recognize the independence of Maldives in 1966 when it broke off from Great Britain.
I guess getting some recognition is a good start if you want to become friends with someone.
And the two nations did become close partners: for more than 50 years, they’ve been cooperating on issues both big and small.
What’s more, India even takes part in ensuring the security of Maldives.
Well, how neighborly of them.
#4: Sri Lanka
India is Sri Lanka’s one and the only neighbor, separated from it by the Palk Strait.
This and many other factors made it obvious that the two countries should work together to achieve great things.
And they sure did.
Despite the numerous problems and tension, they had between them before. India and Sri Lanka’s relations have improved a lot in recent decades.
For example, after a 2004 earthquake in Sri Lanka, India was the fastest to react and help its neighbor.
I think this says enough about how much they care. And I’m sure the future is only bright for these two neighboring nations.
Given that both India and Australia belong to the Commonwealth of Nations. It isn’t at all strange that they have a lot in common.
They both once belonged to the British Empire. So there are lots and lots of cultural links between the countries.
In particular, cricket and field hockey are two sporting passions they share that came from the time of colonization.
In fact, cricket is so popular in both India and Australia that the national teams often tour each other’s countries.
And probably the best thing about it is that the most talented young Indian cricket players get scholarships to train at the Australian Cricket Academy.
Looks like friendships can open a lot of great opportunities.
History proves that nothing could lessen the warmth between Japan and India.
I mean, Japan actually imposed sanctions on India at one point in the late 90s.
But even this didn’t weaken the bonds connecting the two. They really are a great example of strong cooperation and partnership, with Japanese corporate giants like Sony and Suzuki building their manufacturing facilities in India.
But perhaps the most important gesture of goodwill was made in 2008.
The two countries signed an agreement. According to which India received a loan of $4.5 billion to build a high-speed railway connecting Delhi and Mumbai.
Of course, the loan was to be returned (who would even think of giving away such a sum?), but the interest on it was really low.
Hey, special conditions for your pals, right?
With its position as a hugely important trading post. Singapore was rather vulnerable when it gained independence in 1965.
All kinds of countries wanted it to become part of them, but only India offered a helping hand and an alliance, not a merger.
Since then, Singapore and India have maintained a warm relationship.
In fact, Singapore has become one of the largest trade partners in India. And they both enjoy mutual import and export of each other’s goods.
Like I said earlier, India has built a three-sided highway connecting it with Myanmar and Thailand.
This is thanks to an interesting fact: since 1991, India has employed the Look East policy. which means that it’s been trying hard to achieve good relations with the countries of Southeast Asia.
At the same time, Thailand employed its Look West policy. Which was basically the same as the Indian effort but in the opposite direction.
So naturally, the countries met halfway, strengthening their bonds with all kinds of agreements.
Historically, though, these two nations also have a lot in common.
India had a huge influence on Thailand’s culture, and some of its ethics are even taught in Thai schools.
You know, that’s a really cool level of trust.
#9: South Korea
Relations between India and South Korea actually began as far back as 2,000 years.
It’s believed that Princess Heo, a legendary queen of Korea. Came from a distant land to marry King Suro, and that land was most probably India.
Anyway, a lot of things happened since then, and today, the Indian-Korean friendship is at its highest.
Any South Korean citizen can travel to India without a visa and receive it upon arrival to the country.
As for trade, in the last few decades. It’s been growing at an astounding pace, proving that the two nations are quite serious about their mutual agreements.
Jamaica is another country on my list that’s had many ties to India since the times of the British Empire.
Like Australia, Jamaica belongs to the Commonwealth of Nations, and they like cricket.
How can they not be close with such similarities?
Anyway, India buys almost everything that Jamaica exports. And that alone is reason enough for their relationship to be cordial.
They support each other whenever they can, and that’s an example of real friendship between nations.
Well, you actually shouldn’t be, since Indian relations with European countries are also rather warm.
And this especially concerns France. For centuries, the two nations have kept strong cultural and trading ties, and since 1998.
They’ve also become strategic partners. France is, in fact, one of the few countries that seem to support India in all its endeavors.
Both countries have a particular day dedicated to each other, and they describe their partnership as a “special relationship,” which means a lot in the diplomatic language.
#12: The UK
Of course, I’ve gotta mention the UK here. The two countries’ strong ties are the result of British colonization, which ended in 1947.
But still left a significant trace. The number of British-Indian citizens is steadily growing. Today, there are about 2 million Indian people living permanently in the UK.
The two countries are really close and respectful of each other.
They’ve not forgotten their past. But they have shown that cooperation and partnership can overrule anything.
In 2010, the UK’s Prime Minister at the time said that India and the United Kingdom have a “new special relationship.”
Ah, there’s that diplomatic language again.
India and Iran have a history of disagreements in many areas. But their current relations are pretty much cordial and warm.
A public poll conducted in 2005 showed that 71% of Iranians viewed India positively.
which is definitely the overwhelming majority. On a larger scale, the two nations have been close partners in trade, strategy, and energy relations.
And that’s despite all of their differences in views on the global arena. I guess they really are like friends: disagreeing on some terms but still sticking together.
What are some of the nations your country is friends with? Sound off in the comments below.