The economy of a nation can only progress and grow if it can secure itself from multiple threat vectors that can derail its sovereignty. Suresh Prabhu, the honourable Minister of Commerce & Industry, India, highlighted this argument at the recently concluded Synergia Conclave 2017 – Security 360.
Security and development go hand and hand. Studies find that areas experiencing terrorism have 10 percent slower growth than surrounding areas ten years down the road. In the Middle East, the World Bank considers IS responsible for a 16-percent loss in welfare capital in Iraq and a 11 percent loss in Lebanon. In East Africa, Al Qaeda–influenced terrorist group Al Shabaab’s attacks in Kenya have hurt the tourist economy, for which it relies on for 12 percent of GDP.
While mainstream development economists have tended to discount the role of the security sector in development, analysts have presented theories about the ways in which the security sector influences economic and political development, for both good and ill.
For any nation in the world, high on the list of concerns is national economic security. It is the ability to protect or to advance economic interests in the face of circumstances that may threaten or block these interests. A strong military is one that can respond to multiple threats. It also requires strong economic underpinnings--and economic instruments can serve as a non-military form of defence.
The Synergia Conclave – Security 360 was held between November 17th and 19th in Bangalore. Experts from across the world congregated to discuss security and business issues in an increasingly digitised asymmetric world. Suresh Prabhu, the honourable Minister of Commerce & Industry, India, spoke about how the security of a nation plays a vital role in the development of its economy.
He said, “Any economic activity presupposes that there is a secured environment. The stability to industrial policy and industrial activity happens only when the security environment is good. It also enhances the ability of the people to think positively, and security ensures economic development. So, the prerequisite for economic development is security.”
The minister spoke about the main focus of the Synergia Conclave noting that “this conclave aims to highlight security issues, with a focus on creating & sustaining a dialogue, facilitating action that increases security with a pro-active and spatial understanding of the entire issue. In addition, it brings together global industry leaders, strategic thinkers, security practitioners, policy makers and media heads on a single platform to provide a 360-degree perspective.”
Suresh Prabhu also highlighted the importance of the Synergia Conclave and role it plays in bringing thought leaders and experts onto one platform to come up with innovative solutions and ideas. He said, “I am certain that the presentations and panel discussions will be very insightful and will give all the participants an opportunity to interact with and learn from leading security & cyber experts all across the globe in proving effective solutions. I look forward to attending the next Synergia Conclave in 2019. Let me again wish the Synergia Foundation, its president Tobby Simon, the distinguished speakers, delegates the very best for the Synergia Conclave.”
Our assessment is that if a nation cannot guarantee the security & safety of its citizens and its sovereignty, then it will not be able to develop economically. A country under constant threat will not be able to invest in its economy.