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China's Interests and Goals in the Arctic: Implications for the United States

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... China's involvement in the Arctic is spurred by resource demands at home and expected future demand for resources. Primarily, China is concerned with an issue deemed the "Malacca dilemma"the possibility that hostile opponents (such as the United States) block essential energy supplies (Wishnick, 2017). Fueling this fear is China's reliance on foreign oil that is imported through the Middle East and the Strait of Malacca. ...
... Fueling this fear is China's reliance on foreign oil that is imported through the Middle East and the Strait of Malacca. Diversification of energy supply and shipping routes would sufficiently assuage this fear, especially considering China's growing import demand of oil (Ahad et al., 2019;Wishnick, 2017). The possible cessation of foreign imports through Malacca poses a considerable security risk to China. ...
... In recent years, fish stocks in the South China Sea have dropped by up to 75% (CSIS Expert Working Group on the South China Sea, 2017) and are speculated to continue to decline due to Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated fishing (IUU) and the impacts of climate change (CSIS Expert Working Group on the South China Sea, 2017; Varley et al., 2020). In response, China has launched international fishing fleets to meet domestic demand (Urbina, 2020;Wishnick, 2017). China's resource needs in fisheries and energy security has led the nation to seek footholds in other resource-rich areas around the globe. ...
... 52 Meanwhile, the PLAN has expanded its global reach to join in various maritime security missions, including operations at the entrances to the Arctic. 53 China's ability to maintain a faraway base in Djibouti is viewed as a proving ground for important lessons on extended deployments and resupply. 54 But this is, of course, not the primary or most visible use of China's peacetime maritime capability. ...
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