- Silk Road also leads to the North Pole
- Hong Kong: Tiananmen commemoration suppression
- EV sales expected to reach 1.8 million
- WHO grants emergency approval to Sinovac
- Baby products manufacturers on the rise
- Xiaomi to become third-largest mobile phone vendor
- Full Truck Alliance plans initial public offering
- Food suppliers need licenses
- Imprisonment for ‘denigrating’ revolutionary heroes
- Lukas Dubro – expert on science fiction
It’s a public slap in the face that China’s President Xi Jinping has handed out. Xi has called the country’s senior officials to order. He said Beijing needs to “get a grip on tone” in its communications with the world and should be “open and confident, but also modest and humble.” That Xi made this announcement via the Xinhua news agency is evidence of exasperation with the behavior and statements of his diplomats, who are increasingly engaged in ugly exchanges with foreign representatives. Xi wants to create a “trustworthy, lovable and respectable” image for China. This move does not come by chance, as the People’s Republic faces difficult events: the 32nd anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre on June 4, and the 100th anniversary of the Communist Party on July 1.
The timing of the arrest of human rights activist Wang Aizhong was no coincidence. Marcel Grzanna spoke with people who, whether they are 65 or 24, keep the memory of the victims of June 4, 1989, alive, even though the date is increasingly threatening to disappear from the history books. Beijing’s National Security Law means it’s only a matter of time.
“As a result of global warming, Arctic shipping routes are likely to become important transport routes for international trade,” says the “White Paper on China’s Arctic Policy” from Beijing’s perspective. Michael Radunski reveals which economic interests have led the People’s Republic to see itself as a “Near-Arctic state” and what role the dream of the “Polar Silk Road” plays in this.
Competition for the Arctic – China’s ice-cold plans
For a brief moment, Sergey Lavrov drops the diplomatic mask. “It has long been perfectly clear to everyone that this is our territory, this is our country,” Russia’s Foreign Minister said last week, referring to the Arctic. “This is our land.” So when Russia took over the chairmanship of the Arctic Council a few days later, it should have been clear not only to the eight council members (Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Canada, Russia and the United States) that Moscow lays claim to the entire 1.2 million square kilometers of that icy region.
And so Norway’s Foreign Minister Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide expressed deep concern as early as December: “We are observing a self-confident Russia in the region.” But new players are also suddenly pushing their way into the “strategically most important region,” she said. Søreide means China in particular.
Raw materials and short sea routes
In January 2018, Beijing published its own Arctic strategy for the first time. A white paper states the goal is to “understand, protect, develop and participate in the governance of the Arctic, to safeguard the common interests of all states and the international community.” But behind the diplomatic platitudes lie Beijing’s own interests: exploiting resources and raw materials, using short sea routes, and, above all, having a say in the region’s future. “China has been involved in the Arctic for a long time, but it is only with this white paper that Beijing has clearly set out how comprehensive China’s interest really is,” says Marc Lanteigne of the Arctic University in Tromsø, Norway, in an interview with China.Table.