1st Edition

China's Maritime Security Strategy The Evolution of a Growing Sea Power

By Edward Sing Yue Chan Copyright 2022
    256 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    256 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book examines the evolution of China’s maritime security strategy, and questions what has made China shift from a constrained to a more assertive strategy.

    Historically, China has not been an active player in maritime security, but in recent years Beijing has begun to pursue policies and measures to safeguard its maritime rights and interests in the Indo-Pacific region. This growing influence in the region has become a concern for other countries about what kind of sea power China is developing. This book seeks to address this concern by providing an overview of the development of China’s maritime security strategy from the era of Deng Xiaoping to Xi Jinping. It suggests that while the involvement of maritime actors and the development of naval capability have provided the depth to the strategy, the national strategic guidelines from each generation of Chinese leadership have determined the overall direction of the maritime security strategy. After 40 years of development, China has established a set of priorities for its maritime agenda: territorial integrity is at the top, followed by development, and then regional and international maritime cooperation. These findings help us to understand China’s multidimensional maritime power as being both assertive and cooperative.

    This book will be of much interest to students of naval strategy, maritime security, Chinese politics and International Relations.

    1. Introduction: What Makes China the Sea Power Today?

    2. Understand Maritime Security Strategy in China

    3. Deng Xiaoping’s Era: A Limited Maritime Security Agenda

    4. Jiang Zemin’s Era: When Maritime Security Became a Concern

    5. Hu Jintao’s Era: The Rise of China in the "Maritime Century"

    6. Xi Jinping’s Era: Constructing a Strong Maritime Power

    7. Conclusion: China the Twenty-First Century Sea Power


    Edward Sing Yue Chan is an independent researcher of China’s maritime security. He was a Visiting Fellow of and he obtained his PhD degree from the Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney, Australia.