18 July 2014
Notwithstanding East Asia’s economic growth rates and deepening integration into the global economy, the region’s strategic realities reflect contending trajectories. As China expands its national interests in the broader context of “new historic missions”, it seeks to regain a great power status and reassert its geopolitical role in the region. As a result of China’s accelerating military modernisation, regional powers are responding by revamping their force modernisation priorities, alliances, and overall strategic choices.
The economic, political and military rise of China, embedded in three decades of relentless Chinese economic growth, has propelled progressive modernisation of the Chinese military with major improvements in virtually every capability domain.
Notwithstanding weaknesses and limitations in capabilities integration, China’s navy is gradually transforming toward a regional blue-water defensive and offensive type fleet with extended so-called anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD) capabilities, limited expeditionary capabilities, and corresponding defensive and offensive air power.
China calls its comprehensive A2/AD strategy a “counter-intervention”, which is interpreted as denying the US and its allies the freedom of action in China’s “near seas” by restricting their deployments into theatre (anti-access) and denying them freedom of movement there (area denial).
… Michael Raska is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies, a constituent unit of Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University.
IDSS / RSIS / Online
Last updated on 21/07/2014