China and the South China Sea Dialogues

China and the South China Sea Dialogues

China and the South China Sea Dialogues

China and the South China Sea Dialogues

Synopsis

Lee provides an in-depth analysis of China's diplomatic strategy in bilateral and multilateral negotiations on the South China Sea. Based on both documentary research and the personal experiences of the author at conferences and meetings on the issue, Lee highlights the approach adopted by China in its dealings with other parties to the dispute. Professor Lee also examines the state of cross-strait dialogues between Taiwan and China on the South China Sea.

Excerpt

When I was about to finish the manuscript for this study, the Asian currency crisis was sweeping the whole region and no economy in the region could remain unscathed. This was especially true for some of the ASEAN economies. Quite obviously, ASEAN, China, and many others were preoccupied with the economic storm, and relatively less attention could be paid to the South China Sea issues. In a way, the diversion of attention to the financial crisis made it opportune and timely for this study to size up the progress, or lack of it, of the South China Sea dialogues so far.

What is presented in this study is actually a product of documentary research and personal experiences at some of the workshops on "Managing Potential Conflicts in the South China Sea" hosted by Indonesia since 1990. Although my interest in the South China Sea could be traced back to the 1970s, when I wrote on the 1974 Battle of the Paracels, I did not continue to pursue this interest, because of my other commitments. It was in the late 1980s that my interest was rekindled as a result of Beijing's presence in the Spratlys after 1988. This was especially true when I was invited to take part in the discussions at the workshop hosted by Indonesia. The workshop in many ways encouraged me to refresh my study of the South China Sea issues. More importantly, it allowed . . .

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