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The Emergence of China as a “Great Maritime Powerâ€

V. L. Larin () and S. K. Pestsov ()

Outlines of global transformations: politics, economics, law, 2020

Abstract: The article discusses strategic intentions and practical actions of modern Chinese leadership aimed to make China a “great maritime power†. The authors analyze theoretical investigations of Chinese scientists in the fields of maritime strategy and politics; examine basic principle of contemporary Chinese maritime policy, Beijing strategic documents and specific plans aimed at developing marine activities, as well as the problems that arise on this way and some practical results achieved. The authors conclude that despite an active “sea rhetoric†of Chinese top leaderships, the global ocean is not in the main focus of Chinese politics which is primarily oriented towards Eurasian continent. For the PRC leadership, “turning China into a great sea power†neither an ultimate goal, nor a path to achieve the world hegemony, but one of the means to solve some goals to support country’s economic and social development. Today main efforts of Chinese maritime policy are aimed at the ocean studies, legal and technical preparation for excavation of deepwater resources, marine environmental protection, upholding the sea rights and interests of China. As far as Beijing considers the “near seas†as “vital†for ensuring China economic and military‑political security, it acts in their space offensively, actively and uncompromisingly. However, although China’s maritime policy focuses mainly on achieving the economic goals, for the past decade the country’s maritime economy has developed at a slower pace than the country’s economy as a whole. The authors conclude that China has a lot to do in order to effectively use not only its own sea space, but also the vast resources of the global oceans to realize the ambitious goals and objectives of the country’s development.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.23932/2542-0240-2020-13-3-2

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