Geopolitics is the analysis of how geographical factors result in the politics and the economics of the country
The term geography is evolved by introducing borders between different regions. These borders are introduced mainly to ensure security and to protect the culture. Some of the other factors that brought borders on the globe are to gain some economic benefits such as foreign direct investment, imports/exports. In addition to this there are also some natural borders such as oceans, mountains, rivers etc. Some of the examples for physical borders are:
– pyrenees mountains which separate france and spain
– ural mountains which divide asia and Europe
– niagara river which separate Canada and usa
– himalayas which separate india and china
The factors that affect geopolitics are population, natural resources, military power, currency value of the country, cultural values of the country, GDP of the country.
There are two forms of powers in geopolitics. they are: 1> hard power
Where hard power involves military power and economic power. The different forms are nuclear weapons, eligibility to spread military power across the globe and Soft power involves cultural power.
There are different forms of powers in all the countries where some of the countries use hard power and some other countries use soft power. There are countries which also adopt smart power that is use of both smart power and hard power.
Hence the above mentioned are the factors that made geopolitics into existence and following on are the different powers in geopolitics.
RISE OF GEOPOLITICS:
The word geopolitics was originally driven by Swedish political scientist Rudolf kjellen and it was got into existence in Europe during world war 1 and world war 2. Later it was spread throughout the world.
Mahans study of rise of the british empire was intial stage of geopolitics which resulted in the formation of geopolitical thought which contains of heartland theory and rimland theory.
This theory was given by mackinder in 1904 which is also known as geographical pivot of history. Mackinder described that there were continuous wars for land and water. He also explained that earth has huge landmass which is included of Asia, Africa and Europe.
So mackinder divided the earth into three different parts. They are:
The inner and marginal crescent
The outer and insular crescent
It includes the area of interior and arctic drainage of the eastern Europe which is surrounded by mountains on the three sides and arctic on the other.
THE INNER AND MARGINAL CRESCENT:
It includes the area of Europe and Asia joining heartland and Africa, north of sahara.
THE OUTER AND INSULAR CRESCENT:
It includes north and south America, south of sahara and Australia. Besides to this it also includes the japan and Great Britain.
According to Mackinder the one with control over heartland will have impeccable position with control over the world. Then he later changed the theory by adding some of the regions like Baltic sea, black sea, lower and middle Volga, Persia, Tibet, magnolia and then named it as strategic heartland in 1919.
In the mids of 1920’s he changed his focus onto north America and western Europe. Then he added eastern united states, north Atlantic and western Europe and given name midland basin.
Later on the theory was put into consideration in world war 2 where Germany was defeated and the heartland become more powerful and ruled over the world island.
Thus Mackinder resulted to the formation of heartland theory and rimland theory which brought control over the world island. This was geopolitical thought in the history of geopolitics.
IMPACT OF GEOPOLITICS ON INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS:
Geopolitics play an important role in the international business among the globe. This has been started in the early days where goods were exchanged in return of other goods between countries. For example India used to export agricultural products in return of agricultural machines and some equipment related to agriculture to UK in 1600.
Followingly imports and exports were done with the exchange of gold, which is called as golden era. And then the US dollars were introduced where exchange of trade was done in terms of dollars, where dollarization is done everywhere for trade between different countries. And later on many currencies were introduced which brought an advantage among many countries. This is how business was started among different countries in the olden days.
Some of the great impacts of geopolitics on international business are:
Oil for food program
OIL FOR FOOD PROGRAM: In this program Iraq was to export more oil in return of goods to meet the basic needs of the people. This lead to a fine of 750,000 euros for corrupting official in the program.
LAFARGE: It is one the important investments in Syria. This brought up a cement factory in jalabiya. Later on ISIS took control over the roads and cities near the factory. It has to taxes about 20000 dollars to ISIS for each month to protect its cement business in Syria.
TRAVEL RISKS: It is one of the risks identified by company called international SOS which is good at medical and security. It has many centres all over the globe. It has complete assistance over the employees work and travel internationally. This tracking keeps informing the travellers the risks they will get through. Thus there are some packages for the employees which protect them all over the trip.
These are some of the risks of geopolitics on international business in history.
Thus we can conclude that geopolitics play a key role in the international business between different countries around the globe. There are many barriers for trade with the foreign in the olden days when as compared to know.
Presently there are somewhat less barriers to trade such as taxes for imports and exports, cultural barriers, lack of resources in the home country. For example apple gadgets are manufactured in china due to the less labour cost and more availability of the employees in china compared to that of USA.
Thus many countries take time zone advantage also to make business easier. The example for it is the scanning reports of hospitals in America are done on the day time of other foreign countries and the reports are available for the very next day.
In addition to this they also take place advantage where surgeries in America are more costlier compared to that of a foreign countries such as India. Most of the people travel to other places to save their money.
Thus geopolitics has both advantages and disadvantages in the international business over the globe. The term geopolitics was born to fight for the natural resources available around their region. Some of the other factors are cultural factors, different languages in different regions.
Thus many countries fought for the survival due to the disputes that are occurred through geopolitics. One of main conflict risen in Europe was immigration crisis where many individuals migrate to Europe considering the advantage of currency value. There are about 1 million migrants in France. Not only in previous days but there are also migrants from different places in recent times.
So we can conclude that geopolitics has brought many conflicts among different countries on the globe in history and now also.