The ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) on the dispute with the Philippines over sovereignty claims in the South China Sea (SCS) went against China. Immediately China labelled the tribunal as ‘law abusing’, calling the decision ‘ill founded’. Although expected, the reaction is yet another indication that sovereignty is increasingly becoming part of Chinese ‘core interest’ on which...
Following the technical ruling in favour of the Philippines by the Permanent Court of Arbitration, and with China increasingly flexing its muscles in the South China Sea, the EU is trying to balance supporting the rule of law with a pragmatic desire to maintain good relations with Beijing.
US President Barack Obama’s recent announcement that the US will lift its embargo on exporting defence equipment to Vietnam grants Hanoi comprehensive access to the US defence market. Questions remain however, over the country’s readiness for the international defence market.
China is playing a positive role in Afghanistan, but needs to take a greater ownership and direction of the potential peace process. As a partner with positive relations in both Kabul and Islamabad, Beijing is well placed to play this role.
The pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has defeated the Nationalist Party (KMT) in Taiwan’s elections. Beijing’s reaction to the result will depend on how it interprets the DPP’s intentions towards the existing framework defining cross-strait relations.