Too Close for Comfort? China-Southeast Asia Relations

Speakers will discuss how Southeast Asian countries are responding to China and what this means for China’s greatest competitor in the region, the United States. 

Research event
6 November 2020 — 12:00PM TO 12:45PM

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi recently concluded a tour of five southeast Asian countries including Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. The stated outcome of the visit was ‘to deepen cooperation with ASEAN, uphold multilateralism and maintain peace and stability.’

While Southeast Asian nations have deepened their economic cooperation with Beijing in recent years, they have remained wary of China’s growing assertiveness in the region. Their respective responses to China’s ever-growing regional influence are varied and complex, determined by a range of factors including historical bilateral relations, trade, and security dynamics.

As Southeast Asia becomes a key geopolitical battleground, what are the global implications of Sino-Southeast Asian relations?


Pon Souvannaseng, Assistant Professor of Global Studies, Bentley University
Sebastian Strangio, Southeast Asia Editor, The Diplomat
Chair: Bill Hayton, Associate Fellow, Chatham House

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