What is the Blue Water Policy?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 9th, 2023

The Blue Water Policy was introduced by Francisco De Almeida, the first Portuguese governor of India. He opposed establishing a territorial empire in India and wanted the Portuguese should maintain supremacy on the sea and confine their activities to purely commercial transactions. The policy was to be powerful at the sea instead of building forts on Indian land.

Blue Water Policy

The Viceroy of Portuguese possessions in India, Francisco de Almeida, opposed establishing a territorial empire in India, preferring that the Portuguese maintain supremacy at sea and limit their activities to purely commercial transactions. This is known as the Blue Water Policy.

  • In order to protect Portuguese interests, King Ferdinand I of Portugal appointed a three-year governor in India and provided him with sufficient troops in 1505.
  • By conquering Aden, Ormuz, and Malacca, the newly appointed governor, Francisco De Almeida, was tasked with strengthening the Portuguese position in India and obliterating the Muslim trade.
  • Only 8 ships left when Francisco de Almeida arrived at Cochin on October 31, 1505.
  • While he was there, he discovered that the Portuguese traders at Quilon had been massacred. He sent his son Lourenço with six ships to attack Quilon’s harbor, where they indiscriminately sank Calicut boats.

Policy of Blue Water – Implications in India

Francisco De Almeida wanted to create Portugal as a powerful nation in the maritime region under this strategy.

  • He took control of Goa from the Sultan of Bijapur.
  • In 1510 AD, Albuquerque was succeeded by Francisco De Almeida.
  • Later, Goa became the headquarters of Portuguese settlements in India.
  • The Navy’s dominance and control over the coastal regions helped to build the Portuguese in India.

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