The Geopolitical Aftershocks of the China-Solomon Islands Security Agreement
Chinese President Xi Jinping, shortly after taking office, remarked in 2012 that “the vast Pacific Ocean has ample space for China and the United States.” The comment was made at a time when Washington was developing its “pivot” or “rebalance” policies in the Asia-Pacific out of concerns about China’s potential to create a sphere of influence in the region that could reach as far as the Pacific Islands. At the time, Beijing’s Pacific policies had been predominantly marked by economic engagement, including via the Belt and Road Initiative, rather than overt strategic considerations.
Since then, however, much has changed. The de facto diplomatic truce between China and Taiwan, which discouraged both parties from swaying each other’s allies, faded quickly when Tsai Ing-wen first took office in 2016. Three years later, the Chinese government succeeded in convincing two Pacific Island states, Kiribati and Solomon Islands, to switch recognition from Taipei to Beijing. And last month, China’s political designs in the Pacific were further revealed when a draft security agreement between China and the Solomons was leaked, including provisions for stationing Chinese military and police personnel in the island state and allowing Chinese vessels to replenish supplies there.
Connecting Taiwan and Finland: An Interview with Prof. Julie Yu-Wen Chen
Julie Yu-wen Chen is Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Helsinki in Finland. Since 2023, she has been involved in the EU twinning project “The EU in the […]
Taiwan and the Diplomatic Squeeze
In mid-March 2023, the self-governing island of Taiwan lost another one of its already few diplomatic allies. Announcing the severing of diplomatic ties between Taiwan and Honduras on Twitter on March 15, […]
An Interview with Professor Torbjörn Lodén: EU and U.S. Relations with China in Retrospect and Looking Ahead
The Institute for Security & Development Policy (ISDP) has for the past three years had the honor and privilege of Professor Torbjörn Lodén serving as its Head of the Stockholm […]
Contemporary Hong Kong-Taiwan Relations in China’s Shadow
On November 25, 2022, the Institute for Security and Development Policy (ISDP) arranged a webinar titled “Contemporary Hong Kong-Taiwan Relations in the Shadow of the People’s Republic of China”. The […]
Russia-DPRK Space Cooperation: It’s Politics, Not Science
The recent Vostochny summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Russian President Vladimir Putin has attracted much international attention. The fact that both leaders pledged to strengthen bilateral […]
Taiwan’s Southbound Drive towards Southeast Asia
This article examines Taiwan’s foreign policy towards Southeast Asia during Ma Ying-jeou’s two-term (2008–2016) and Tsai Ing-wen’s first-term (2016–2020) presidencies. It discusses the context of East Asian regionalization and regionalism, […]