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Sigur Center Asia Report, Issue 25: Conflict in the Face of Cooperation: Exploring the Complexity of Chinese Policy in East Asia Open Access

What explains escalating tensions between China and its neighbors in the South China Sea over the past several years? Is conflict inevitable as a rising China seeks to protect its national interests or will global trade and international organizations ensure peaceful economic cooperation throughout East Asia? These pressing questions were the subject of a recent lecture – Rocky Rise: China’s East Asia Policy (2009-Present) – sponsored by the Sigur Center for Asian Studies. Dr. Nicholas Khoo, senior lecturer in the Department of Politics at the University of Otago in New Zealand, shared insights he gained through interviews with Chinese academics and analysts conducted in Beijing last year on the increasing complexity and direction of China’s regional policy. In this Asia Report, we present Dr. Khoo’s views on debates over Chinese foreign policy, his understanding of Beijing’s recent actions, and his recommendations for U.S. policymakers.

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