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  • Publication Date: 05-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: In a recent conference, trade experts identified three primary reasons the World Trade Organization (WTO) failed to launch a new trade Round at its December 1999 Ministerial. First, leading members were unable to resolve differences on critical issues prior to the gathering. In addition, many developing countries and nongovernmental organizations were more assertive than they had been at previous conferences. Finally, in recent years, the WTO has expanded the range of issues it addresses, which has made efforts to reach a consensus on any point more difficult. According to the speakers, as a result of the acrimonious Ministerial, the WTO has suffered a substantial loss of credibility, which will impair efforts to launch a new Round in the near term. There is no immediate alternative to strong US leadership, and WTO negotiations will be more complicated because developing countries and nongovernmental organizations will be more inclined to resist trade liberalization efforts that they believe do not advance their interests. Experts at the conference offered a variety of assessments regarding the course the WTO might choose to follow this year. The majority argued that if the trade body is seeking to rebuild confidence, it could continue with scheduled meetings on agriculture and services and use the time to rebuild confidence. A minority, however, held that the forum is too fractured to make progress, thus talks would only undermine the already declining prestige of the trade body. The experts identified several long-run challenges that the WTO will probably need to address to be an effective decisionmaking institution, including: Bridging the developed-developing country gap Costa Rica, Mexico, and South Africa generally support trade liberalization and have credibility among developed and developing states; thus they are in a position to meld the interests of the two sides. Enacting institutional reforms The organization's expansive agenda and large membership require that it adopt policies that facilitate decisionmaking, especially before new members such as China and Russia join. The trade body may try to increase transparency to promote greater trust in its procedures. Also, to avoid protracted and bitter selections such as the forum suffered last year, the WTO could review its procedures for electing a new director general. Managing the backlash against globalization Supporters of freer trade could launch a massive educational program to highlight the gains for all countries from expanded trade and to counter the dire assertions made by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Russia, China
  • Publication Date: 03-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) is embarked on an ambitious, long-term military modernization effort to develop capabilities to fight and win short-duration, high- intensity conflicts along its periphery. China's defense modernization is broad reaching, encompassing the transformation of virtually all aspects of the military establishment, to include weapon systems, operational doctrine, institution building, and personnel reforms. China values military power to defend economic interests, secure territorial claims, and build political influence commensurate with its status as a regional power with global aspirations. In recent years, the PLA has accelerated reform and modernization in response to the central leadership's concerns that developments across the Taiwan Strait could put at risk Beijing's objectives for Taiwan unification.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Taiwan, Beijing
  • Author: Todd M. Koca, Jason D. Ellis
  • Publication Date: 10-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The nature, scope, and viability of the strategic relationship between the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the United States have emerged as leading security policy issues. Among the many reasons for this are: China's evidently growing defense budget and its military modernization campaign; its often threatening rhetoric over Taiwan; its reputed espionage activities; and disputes over collateral security issues, such as China's continuing proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Furthermore, Beijing's lack of transparency concerning its strategic capabilities and modernization programs, and the intentions that undergird each, make it difficult to confidently forecast China's future direction; yet significant strategic decisions undertaken today will have far-reaching and long-term implications. There is a growing sense among defense analysts and specialists that the future disposition of Chinese strategic forces may only modestly resemble that of the past. Looking ahead, U.S. policy- makers must address three central questions: (1) the likely extent of China's strategic modernization; (2) the degree of complementarity of U.S. and PRC regional and strategic interests over time; and (3) the implications of each for U.S. foreign and defense policy.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Taiwan
  • Author: James J. Przystup, Ronald N. Montaperto, Gerald W. Faber
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Relations across the Taiwan Strait have reached an apparent impasse. Both China and Taiwan have, in a sense, painted themselves into corners. Yet, aware of the considerable costs that will inevitably be incurred by new and higher levels of tension or conflict, both President Jiang Zemin of China and Chen Shui-bian, the newly elected President of Taiwan, share a vital interest in finding a face-saving way out of their respective dilemmas without compromising their longer term objectives. In the process, each is being influenced and constrained by a number of factors related to politics, economics, and broad strategic interests. Overall, these factors will provide incentives to seek a reduction of tensions, at least in the short term. At the same time, years of mutual mistrust and the stark and growing differences between their respective political and social cultures will continue to affect the prospects for a mutually acceptable resolution of the issues separating China and Taiwan.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Government
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Taiwan
  • Publication Date: 03-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Carter Center
  • Abstract: At the invitation of the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA), People's Republic of China, The Carter Center sent a delegation to observe villager committee (VC) elections in Hebei Province from January 4 to 13, 2000. The delegation was led by Ambassador Gordon L. Streeb, Associate Executive Director of the Center, and made up of nine Center staff members, election experts and China scholars from various universities in the United States and Denmark. This was the fourth time since 1997 that the Center has observed village elections in China and the first time that an international organization has been invited to observe a primary VC election.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, International Organization
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Denmark
  • Author: Youn-Suk Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: Historically, Korea has been under the influence of its ambitious neighbors, China, Japan and Russia, which causes Korea's intense concern for its long-term independence. Through the budding signs of North-South Korea unification, Korea perceives that long-term peace and security derive from having a close diplomatic and economic relationship with the United States as the most crucial ingredient. Thus President Kim Dae Jung of South Korea and his counterpart of the North, Kim Jong II, at the June meeting emphasized the continued presence of United States troops in the Korean peninsula for stability and peace in East Asia even after the unification. In association with the United States economy, the unified Korea could play a major role as a regional balancer, giving stability to a new order in Northeast Asia and the Asia-Pacific region as a whole.
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Japan, China, Korea, Northeast Asia
  • Author: Chong-Wook Chung
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: I feel deeply honored to be invited to this annual meeting of the International Council on Korean Studies and to deliver a keynote speech on overseas Koreans. I would like to express my profound gratitude to Professor I lpyong Kim, President of the Council, and others who worked so hard to make this timely and important annual meeting a success. Before I start, let me make some preliminary remarks. First, I do not believe I can speak on behalf of the government of Korea. I left the government two years ago to return to the academic community. Second, I do not consider myself, either as a scholar or as a former government official, an expert on the subject of overseas Koreans. The best claim I can make in this connection is the fact that while I was serving as the senior secretary for national security and foreign policy for the President for two years in 1993 and 1994, my responsibilities included the affairs of overseas Koreans.
  • Political Geography: China, America, Korea
  • Author: Nicholas R. Lardy
  • Publication Date: 05-2000
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In what has been described as its most important vote this year, the U.S. Congress will soon decide whether to provide permanent normal trade relations to China. A vote is required because, after 14 years of negotiations, China is poised to enter the World Trade Organization (WTO). Assuming China concludes its bilateral negotiations with the European Union by June or July, entry is likely before the end of the year. The cornerstone principle of the World Trade Organization is that members provide each other unconditional Most Favored Nation trade status, now called Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) in U.S. trade law. Current U.S. law precludes granting PNTR to China; as a result President Clinton has asked Congress to amend the law. A negative vote would have no bearing on China's entry into the World Trade Organization, but it would mean that U.S. companies would not benefit from the most important commitments China has made to become a member. Gaining the full range of benefits is particularly important in light of the large and growing deficit the United States faces in its trade with China (Figure 1). A positive vote would give U.S. companies the same advantages that would accrue to companies from Europe, Japan, and all other WTO member states when China enters the World Trade Organization. It would also provide an important boost to China's leadership, that is taking significant economic and political risks in order to meet the demands of the international community for substantial additional economic reforms as a condition for its WTO membership. A positive vote would strengthen bilateral economic relations more generally. That may help place a floor on the broader bilateral relationship, which continues to face critical challenges on security issues, stemming largely from tensions between China and Taiwan, and on human rights issues.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Jonathan G. Clarke
  • Publication Date: 10-2000
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The foreign policy record of the Clinton-Gore administration deserves a less than stellar grade. At the end of the Cold War, there was an extraordinary opportunity to build a new relationship with a democratic Russia; restructure U.S. security policy in both Europe and East Asia to reduce America's burdens and risk exposure; and revisit intractable Cold War–era problems, such as the frosty relations with Cuba, Vietnam, and North Korea. The administration's performance must be judged within the context of such an unprecedented opportunity for constructive change.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, Europe, Israel, East Asia, Asia, North Korea, Vietnam
  • Author: Mark A. Groombridge
  • Publication Date: 04-2000
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The U.S. Congress is in the historic position of being able to help pro-reform leaders in China move their country in a market-oriented direction. A vote to grant China permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) status will bolster the position of those leaders in Beijing who are attempting to deepen and broaden the scope of China's two-decade experiment with economic reform. Granting PNTR and China's subsequent accession to the World Trade Organization will benefit, not only the United States and the world trading community, but most directly the citizens of China, millions of whom are still mired in abject poverty.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Beijing, Asia