Skip to main content
People walk past a copper coin-shapped decoration for Chinese New Year on January 20, 2014 in Zhengzhou, China. (ChinaFotoPress/ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images)

Why China Will Not Become the Dominant Power in Asia

Paul Dibb & John Lee

The belief that China will soon become the dominant power in Asia is based on assumptions that its continued and rapid economic rise, and its emergence as a regional peer of America’s in military terms is all but assured. Such a belief underpins arguments that a fundamental strategic reorganisation of Asia is inevitable, and that it will be necessary and perhaps even desirable to concede to China significant ‘strategic space’. Dependent largely on linear extrapolations about the future, such arguments ignore the implications of China’s economic, social and national fragilities, its lack of major friends or allies in the region as well as the considerable military deficiencies and challenges faced by the People’s Liberation Army. With the Defence White Paper due for release in 2015, the government should bear in mind that planning for an era of Chinese dominance in the region—or even its emergence as an American strategic peer in Asia—would be premature if not improbable. Australia should not design its defence force for war with China, but it should be able to counter Chinese coercion and contribute to Allied military operations if necessary.

Click below to read the full article.

View PDF

Related Articles

The Iran Deal Is Now Officially a Disaster. So Where Were You?

Lee Smith

Agents of Influence: The real consequence of Obama’s signature foreign policy initiative is mayhem...

Continue Reading

Reconstructing Iraq: A Test Case for Trumpian Burden-Sharing

Jonas Parello-​Plesner & Peter Rough

The success against the Islamic State in Iraq stands as one of the crowning foreign policy achievements of President Trump’s first year in office...

Continue Reading

For Europe, Trump Is a Blessing in Disguise

Walter Russell Mead

His policies promote energy independence and balance between France and Germany...

Continue Reading