1st Edition

Routledge Companion to China and the Middle East and North Africa

Edited By Yahia H. Zoubir Copyright 2023
    490 Pages 35 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Focusing on China’s relations with the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), this Companion provides essential analysis of a complex region which threatens to become the battleground for rival powers in the future.

    The Routledge Companion to China and the Middle East and North Africa brings together China scholars from around the world, including from China, the MENA region, the United States, Asia, and Europe. The contributors, experts in their respective areas––which range from politics, military and nuclear power to economics, energy, and tourism––use different methodologies to understand China’s policies in the MENA. Topics analyzed include Chinese investment in infrastructure, the COVID-19 pandemic and the Belt and Road Initiative. Divided into three Parts, the book addresses China’s multidimensional presence in the MENA and its impact on the region while also explicating the MENA’s relations with its traditional Western allies. Bilateral relations and people-to-people interactions are also explored and provide in-depth context to the areas of cooperation that are part of China’s dealings with its partners in the region.

    Combining contemporary analysis with accessible prose, the book will be of interest to students, scholars, and policy-makers active in international relations, security studies, and economics, as well to general audiences interested in the MENA region.


    Part I: China and the MENA

    1. China and the Middle East: An Overview

    Muhamad S. Olimat

    2. China’s Energy Diplomacy towards the Middle East in the BRI Era: Energy Security Versus Geopolitics

    Janet Xuanli Liao

    3. China’s Infrastructure Construction in the Middle East

    Chuchu Zhang

    4. Market-Driven Industrialization: Production Capacity Cooperation Between China and Middle East Countries

    Jiuzhou Duan & Shiyu Hao

    5. Belt and Road Initiative and China’s Expanding Ties with West Asia and North Africa

    Manochehr Dorraj

    6. China as a Geo-economic and Security Actor in the MENA Region

    Lisa Watanabe

    7. US-China Rivalry in the MENA Region

    Zeno Leoni

    8. China and US Policy in the Persian Gulf: Is a New Security Architecture Evolving?

    Lars Erslev Andersen

    9. US-China Nuclear Exports Rivalry in the MENA Region

    Çiğdem Pekar

    10. China and Regional Stability in the Middle East: Economics, Engagement and Great Power Competition

    Robert Mason

    11. Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in The Middle East

    M Zulfikar Rakhmat, M Habib Pashya, Gufron Gozali

    12. China’s Maritime Silk Route and the MENA Region

    Geoffrey F. Gresh

    13. China’s Rise and Its Security Presence in the Middle East and North Africa

    Andrea Ghiselli

    14. Building an ‘Outer Space Silk Road’: China’s Beidou Navigation Satellite System in the Arab World

    Degang Sun, Yuyou Zhang, & Luzhou Lin

    15. China and the Gulf: Necessary Partners

    Karen E. Young

    16. China-Maghreb Relations: South-South Cooperation or Authoritarian Advancement?

    Julia Gurol

    17. China and Conflict Management in the Middle East

    Guy Burton

    18. The Uyghur Issue in Sino-MENA Relations: The Case of Turkey

    Thierry Kellner & Vanessa Frangville

    19. China’s ‘Health Silk Road’ Diplomacy in the MENA

    Yahia H. Zoubir & Emilie Tran

    Part II: Bilateral Relations

    20. Sino-Algerian Relationship: Strengthening the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership

    Siham Matallah

    21. China-Egypt Relations: A Model for Comprehensive Strategic Partnership

    Bassem Elmaghraby

    22. Sino-Iranian Relationship: Preserving the Status Quo in the Region?

    Kambiz Zare

    23. China-Israel: Trilateral Dimensions of Bilateral Relations

    Yitzhak Shichor

    24. Unofficial Diplomacy: The Paradox of Israel-Taiwan Relations

    Yitzhak Shichor

    25. Saudi Arabia’s Relations with China

    Sean Foley

    26. China and Sudan

    Daniel Large

    27. Railway Cooperation between Turkey and China within the Belt and Road Initiative

    Umut Ergunsü

    28. Pragmatic Partners: China-UAE Relations

    Zhen Yu

    Part III: China-MENA People-to-People Interactions

    29. Overseas Chinese in the Middle East and North Africa: Proposing A Research Agenda

    Yuting Wang

    30. China’s Tourism in the Middle East and North Africa: Trends and Outlook

    April A. Herlevi

    31. Middle Eastern Students in China – Motivations and Implication

    Roie Yellinek

    32. China’s Soft Power and Cultural Diplomacy in MENA

    Sophie Zinser, Dhahi Li & Adel Hamaizia


    Yahia H. Zoubir is Professor of International Studies and Director of Research in Geopolitics at KEDGE Business School, France, as well as Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Middle East Council on Global Affairs (Doha, Qatar). He has published dozens of scholarly works, including books, articles in leading academic journals, entries in encyclopedias, and chapters on international politics, foreign policy, governance, and security issues. He has served as consultant for governments and companies worldwide.

    "In this rapidly changing era, the study of China’s relation with the Middle East and North Africa is determined to attract significant attention from scholars, decision makers, and arguably the general public. In reality, comprehensive and good quality research in this field since the 1970s is in extreme short supply. The current edited volume is a much-needed contribution to this deprived field. The editor has done a remarkable job by gathering an impressive group of scholars, with expertise covering subjects from IR to social anthropology, from cultural diplomacy to public policy, and from international political economy to geopolitics. The academic ambition of this volume is also manifested in its astonishingly comprehensive geographic breadth. Papers in this volume have nearly covered all the countries in the MENA region which are involved in the Chinese ‘Belt and Road’ initiative. For anyone interested in the growing Chinese entanglement with the MENA region and its implication to the shaping of the future global order, this volume is a must read."

    Zhiguang Yin, Distinguished Professor at the School of International Relations and Public Affairs, Fudan University, China

    "Edited by Yahia H. Zoubir and contributed by noted scholars in the emerging fields, Routledge Companion to China and the Middle East and North Africa is an authoritative and handy volume on China’s bilateral and multilateral engagement in these important regimes of the world. Strongly recommended."

    Suisheng Zhao, Professor of International Studies, University of Denver and Editor, Journal of Contemporary China, United States

    "This is a book of breathtaking scope and ambition, and it is a rewarding one. It is brimming with insights that cast light not only on the recent past, but also on the future we will all share."

    Jon Alterman, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), United States