China and South Asia : Changing Regional Dynamics, Development and Power Play book cover
1st Edition

China and South Asia
Changing Regional Dynamics, Development and Power Play

ISBN 9780367428297
Published September 30, 2021 by Routledge India
304 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This book looks at the changing dynamics and regional power play between China and South Asia. It explores crucial issues such as China–Pakistan Economic Corridor and the changing nature of China–India relations; China’s trident approach in South Asia and its rising influence in the region; the responses of small states to rising China; China’s twenty-first-century Belt and Road Initiative; China and India; China’s rise and the USA’s security policy vis-à-vis India; the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and regional security; and Russia’s ‘Pivot to the East’ and its impact on the Asia-Pacific region. The volume brings together the views of scholars from China, South Asia and beyond on different aspects of China and South Asia engagement, including regional politics, connectivity, infrastructure and development projects, power politics, economy, ideology and culture. The chapters offer insights into trends and challenges within China’s economic and security environment as impacted by globalization, regional interests and the demands of cooperation. They present critical, comprehensive and expert analyses of China’s engagement with South Asia by covering historical, sociological, political, cultural, economic and strategic factors while including perspectives from individual countries.

This volume will be useful to scholars and researchers of Chinese studies, politics and international relations, South Asian studies, foreign policy, diplomacy, security and strategic studies and political studies, as well as to those in media, policymakers, bureaucrats, diplomats and think tanks.

Table of Contents

Foreword by S D Muni

1.      Introduction: China and South Asia in the 21st Century

Rajiv Ranjan


PART I: Politics and Strategy

2.      CPEC and Changing Dynamics of China–India Relations

Saeed Shafqat

3.      China’s Trishula Approach in South Asia: Challenges to Balancing the End Game

Mahendra P Lama

4.      Coping with Rising China: Responses of the Small States of South Asia

Robayt Khondoker and Rashed Uz Zaman

5.      Cooperation or Competition in China–India Relations: A Quantitative Analysis of Debate

Zhang Shulan, Xu Weidan, Huo Wenle

6.      Security Environment in South Asia: The Role of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

Amjad Abbas Khan


Part II: Belt and Road Initiative

7.      China’s 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road and its Influence on the Development of South Asia: A Geopolitical Perspective

Asantha Senevirathna

8.      Belt and Road Initiative: Changing Dynamics of Development in South Asia

Atia Ali Kazmi

9.      Belt and Road Initiative: Chinese Normative Power in South Asia

Federico Tombari

10.  Bangladesh–China Maritime Security Cooperation: A Search for New Opportunities under the 'Belt and Road' Initiative

Noor Mohammad Sarker


Part III: Ideology, Media and Culture

11.  The Impact of Sino-Soviet Spilt on the Left Politics in Pakistan

Muhammad Qasim Sodhar

12.  Image of China in Afghan Media

Hazrat Bahar

13.  Prospects of ChinaIndia Bilateral Cooperation in Cultural Industry in a New Stage of the 21st Century

Wan Jiqiong

14.  Development of Cultural Eco-tourism in Gilgit-Baltistan: Opportunities and Challenges in the Wake of CPEC

Naila Masood Ahmad


Part IV: Great Power Politics

15.  Anticipating the China Challenge: China’s Rise and the United States’ Security Policy vis-à-vis India

Kashish Parpiani

16.  China’s Belt and Road Initiative and the Indian Ocean Balance

Vivek Mishra

17.  Russia’s “Pivot to the East” and its Impact on Asia-Pacific Region and South Asia

Alexey A. Semenov

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Rajiv Ranjan is Associate Professor in Global Studies at the College of Liberal Arts, Shanghai University, China.

Guo Changgang is Professor at the College of Liberal Arts; Director of the Institute of Global Studies, Shanghai University, and Director of the Institute of History, Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, China.


‘Today, South Asia witnesses significant changes ranging from growing partnerships, unfolding opportunities to perceptible uncertainties; and China’s robust engagement with the region needs to be seen and understood through a fresh lens of strategic pragmatism and developmental reciprocity. This collection of papers, by both established and up-and-coming scholars of the countries involved, provides an excellent study of multiple aspects of the relationship and reflects diverse perspectives and complementary insights. The study, balancing sober thoughts, meaningful policy recommendations with sanguine expectations, also proves a worthwhile attempt to move beyond the conventional geopolitical approach.’

Zhang Li, Professor, Institute of South Asian Studies, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China


‘The profile of China–South Asia interactions is increasing day-by-day due to the Belt and Road Initiative, investments in infrastructure for connectivity, trade and tourism, but also due to the spread of terrorism and other non-traditional security challenges. This volume, which has gathered a number of scholars’ perspectives unravelling these interactions, is comprehensive in their coverage of subjects and themes and provide diversified opinions. Several contributors to the volume have reflected on the historical and contemporary interactions, asymmetries, balance of power, cooperation, competition or even elements of conflict emerging in the region and provide relevant studies.’ 

Srikanth Kondapalli, Professor, Chinese Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India  


‘This edited volume is a well-timed and powerful collection of seventeen chapters from eminent scholars across the world each taking a close and dispassionate look at China’s role in regional and global politics. It provides an international context against which China’s foreign policy behaviour and strategic thinking can be carefully compared and critically examined. In this analytically sophisticated and empirically rich volume, the authors have brilliantly offered systematic, graceful, and trenchant analyses of the critical factors that shape and influence China’s external relations. As such, it makes an enlightening addition to the scholarship on China’s foreign policy in the changing international environment.’

Ehsanul Haque, Professor, Department of International Relations, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh


‘South Asia has been moving closer to the very core of the India–China bilateral dynamics, as developments in this region vigorously overlap and intermesh, with both powers engaging and contending with the myriad challenges in very different ways. While most accounts seek to portray this complex engagement in terms of power politics, the voices from within the region have a more nuanced story. By bringing a host of scholars from South Asia, this volume would serve to invigorate the ongoing debates with fresh perspectives, closer to the ground realities and bring a much-needed balance to the dominant discourse.’

Alka Acharya, Professor, Centre for East Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India


‘South Asia is a geographical centre and a place where cultures gather. Now it has become an active stage for the strategic competition of great powers. This book gathers some influential experts and scholars in China and South Asia, from the perspectives of history, geography, culture and economy, discusses the relationship between China and South Asian countries in-depth and comprehensively. Reading this book can help readers understand China’s South Asia policy, the trends and causes of changes in China–India relations, how to eliminate the uncertainty in China–India relations, and understand the importance of China–South Asia relations more comprehensively and accurately.’

Zhang Jiadong, Professor, Center for South Asian Studies, Fudan University, Shanghai, China


‘There is now little doubt that China is a global superpower, if not the world’s preeminent political, economic and cultural player. The Chinese influx in South Asia, home to almost two billion people and arguably the single most important region in charting the future of the world in decades to come, is, therefore, of global significance. By charting numerous aspects of China’s historical and contemporary engagements with South Asia, most notably its uneasy relationship with India and growing strategic and economic influence in Pakistan, this volume offers critical insights into China’s ongoing South Asia odyssey. Whether China’s growing footprint heralds an egalitarian and sustainable development paradigm will have an impact on not only South Asia, but the world at large.’

Aasim Sajjad Akhtar, Professor, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan