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China-Myanmar Relations under Xi Jinping: A Critical Assessment

10 Apr 2019

Puyam Rakesh Singh

Venue: Seminar Room, ICS
Time: 3:00 PM

Abstract

Political transition in Myanmar has affected the China-Myanmar relationship. The unilateral suspension of the Myitsone Dam and protests against several Chinese-funded projects in Myanmar marked the deterioration in investment environment for the Chinese State-owned companies. Moreover, the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) and national reconciliation process in Myanmar continue to pose challenges to the relationship. Geographical contiguity, historical baggage and ethnic relations across the China-Myanmar border have been shaping China’s role in Myanmar peace process. Amidst such uncertainty, China has emphasised the importance of strengthening people-to-people relations under the new situation. As the investment environment in Myanmar has seen some improvement over the years, construction of the proposed China-Myanmar Economic Corridor under the framework of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) will strengthen the China-Myanmar Comprehensive Strategic Cooperative Partnership. Nevertheless, peace and stability in Northern Myanmar and adept handling of the Rohingya Muslim issue in Rakhine State of Myanmar remain major challenges facing China’s policy towards Myanmar.  

About the Speaker

Dr Puyam Rakesh Singh is currently working with Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) as a Research Fellow. Earlier, he worked as an Associate Fellow at Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), New Delhi. He has received his MPhil and PhD from Centre for East Asian Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi. He has contributed articles on China-Myanmar relations and also presented seminar/conference papers on China-Myanmar relations and Implications of China’s Infrastructure Development in India’s Neighbourhood. His other areas of interest include security studies, China-ASEAN Strategic Partnership, Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and China’s military modernisation and reforms.

 

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