Jaesoo Park
Dr. Park Jaesoo is a research fellow with the East West Center (EWC) at the University of Hawaii, USA. Formerly he has worked at the Korean government agency as director, where he served as delegate of government for International Organizations such as APEC, ATCM, UNEP etc., and as supervisor for government's projects and researches. He earned his Ph.D. in International Studies from Graduate School of Peace & Security Studies. His research is focused on International Affairs, Global Security, Foreign Policy & Strategy, Arctic & Antarctic Politics, Maritime Environment, and Climate Change.
Visits: 150
Downloads: 21
Creative Commons License
Journal of Liberty and International Affairs | Vol. 6, No. 1 | May 2020
Jaesoo Park
Myanmar has crafted a neutral foreign policy since its colonial years to avoid leaning too much on any foreign power, but a spiraling political crisis at home is pushing it toward China as a buffer against international outrage. Myanmar faces charges of genocide against the Rohingya. China has backed Myanmar in the UN. In fact, China is in a similar situation. China is grappling with international criticism over perceived repression of ethnic Uighur people. Myanmar is exposed to various words and loud in the international community. So Myanmar wants to improve relations with China and is turning into an active cooperative attitude as a strategy to secure a friendly army. This paper shows how the diplomatic relations between Myanmar and China are changing, and how Myanmar's foreign strategy toward China is approaching. Also this article analyzes the outlook of diplomatic relations and the implications of the current situation.
Rohingya; Myanmar-China relations; Belt and Road Initiative; Indo-Pacific Region

1. "China-ASEAN Expo contributes to new Myanmar-China cooperation."2019. The Myanmar Times. September 17. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.mmtimes.com/news/china-asean-expo-contributes-new-myanmar-china-cooperation.html
2. "China's Relations with Burma". 2015. United States Institute of Peace. Accessed May 13, 2019. https://www.usip.org/publications/2015/05/chinas-relations-burma
3. Clapp, P.A., 2015. "China's Relations with Burma". Testimony before the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission; 13.
4. Constantinou, M. Costas. Kerr, Pauline. Sharp, Paul. 2016. "The SAGE Handbook of Diplomacy." SAGE: 597.
5. DICA. 2019. "Data and Statistics, Foreign Investment by Country." Accessed July 10.https://www.dica.gov.mm/en/taxonomy/term/38
6. Economic and Commercial Counselor's Office of the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the Federal Republic of Myanmar. 2012."Myanmar Parliament Passes New Foreign Investment Law." February 25. Accessed May 5, 2019. http://mm.mofcom.gov.cn/article/ddfg/201202/20120207983337.shtml.
7. Gurudas, Das C. Thomas, Joshua. 2018. BCIM Economic Cooperation: Interplay of Geoeconomics and Geo-politics. Abingdon: Taylor & Francis: 218.
8. Ganesan, Narayanan. 2018. "Bilateral Issues in Myanmar's Policy towards China." January, Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Freiburg, Occasional Paper Series:3.
9. Plecher, H. 2019. "ASEAN countries: Inflation rate from 2008 to 2018." Statista. December 6. Accessed December 26, 2019. https://www.statista.com/statistics/804325/inflation-rate inthe-asean-countries/
10. Jennings, Ralph. 2019. "Myanmar, Though Suspicious of China, Edges Closer to Beijing for Safety." VOA December 25. Accessed October 25, 2019.https://www.voanews.com/east-asia-pacific/ myanmar-though-suspicious-china-edges-closer-beijing-safety
11. Krishnan, Vidya. 2019. "Nobody Is coming to help us." the Atlantic. Oct 19. Accessed October15, 2019. https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2019/10/rohingya-bangladesh-myanmar-international-law/600169/
12. Kubo, Koji. 2016."Myanmar's Cross-border Trade with China: Beyond Informal Trade, IDE Discussion Paper No. 625."Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization (IDEJETRO).http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs24/2016-12-00-Myanmar-Cross-border-Trade-with-China-Beyond-Informal-Trade-red.pdf.
13. Kundu, Sampa. 2018."How Myanmar Benefits from the US-China Competition in the Indo-Pacific." The diplomat. December 8. Accessed November 12, 2019. https://thediplomat.com/2018/12/how-myanmar-benefits-from-the-us-china-competition-in-the-indo-pacific/
14. Li, Chenyang and Song, Shaojun. 2018. "China's OBOR Initiative and Myanmar's Political Economy,"The Chinese Economy, 51: 323.
15. Lintner, Bertil. 2019. "Poor and isolated, Myanmar backs into a China debt trap." Asia Times. January 31. Accessed July 5, 2019. https://asiatimes.com/2019/01/poor-and-isolated-myanmar-backs-into-a-china-debt-trap/
16. "Myanmar treatment of Rohingya looks like 'textbook ethnic cleansing'."2017. The guardian, September 11. Accessed June 23, 2019. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/sep/11/un-myanmars-treatment-of-rohingya-textbook-example-of-ethnic-cleansing
17. Poling,Gregory. 2018. "Kyaukpyu: Connecting China to the Indian Ocean. Asian Maritime Transparent Initiative."CSIS. April 4. Accessed October 7, 2019.https://amti.csis.org/kyaukpyu-china-indian-ocean/
18. "Myanmar Rohingya: What you need to know about the crisis." 2018. BBC.April 24. https://www.genocidewatch.com/single-post/2018/09/23/Myanmar-Rohingya-What-you-need-to-know-about-the-crisis
19. Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the People's Republic of China. 2011. "President Hu Jintao Holds Talks with His Myanmar Counterpart U Thein Sein. https://www.fmprc.gov.cn/mfa_eng/wjb_663304/zzjg_663340/yzs_663350/gjlb_663354/2747_663498/2749_663502/t826539.shtml
20. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China. 2013. "Joint Statement Between China andMyanmar on Deepening Comprehensive Strategic Cooperation."Accessed August 15, 2019. http://www.fmprc.gov.cn/web/ziliao_674904/1179674909/t12113 67.shtml
21. Tourangbam, Monish and Amin, Pawan. 2019. "China's Dynamic Grip on Myanmar." The diplomat, May7. Accessed July 25, 2019. https://thediplomat.com/2019/05/chinas-dynamic-grip-on-myanmar/
22. Ott, Marvin C. 1998. "From Isolation to Relevance: Policy Considerations." In Burma: Prospects for a Democratic Future, ed. Robert Rotberg: 71-2.
23. Perlez, Jane. 2017. "In China, Aung San Suu Kyi Finds a Warm Welcome." The New York Times, November 30. Accessed June 22, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/30/world/asia/china-myanmar-aid-sanctions.html
24. Raymond, Russell. 2015. "Myanmar's Muslim Minority: The Plight of the Rohingya". Freedom House. September 8, Accessed September 16, 2019. https://freedomhouse.org/blog/myanmar-s-muslim-minority-plight-rohingya
25. Sein, Daw Chaw Chaw.2015. "Myanmar's Perspective of One Belt, One Road."Internal Document for Silk Road Forum 2015. Accessed July 22, 2019. http://en.drc.gov.cn/DawChawChawSein.pdf
26. Singh, P. R. 2014. "China-Myanmar relations in the twenty-first century."Himalayan and Central Asian Studies, 18(1/2): 188-89.
27. Thant, Myint U. 2016."Why Burma must reset its relationship with China."Foreign Policy.January 12. Accessed November 7, 2019.http://news.yahoo.com/why-burma-must-reset-relationship-224903808.html.
28. Tao, Song. 2016. "Research on the Development Characteristics and Trends of Chinese Direct Investment in Myanmar."World Geographic Research 25(4):40.
29. Zhou, Laura. 2019. "China faces backlash as it bids to rekindle stalled US$3.6 billion Myitsone Dam project". South China Morning Post. Jan 20. Accessed May 24, 2019. https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/2182825/china-faces-backlash-it-bids-rekindle-stalled-us36-billion
Circle of Friends
Any views expressed in this publication are the views of the authors and are not necessarily the views of the editors or publisher.
Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
is published by the Institute for Research and European Studies - Bitola
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License