01:54 GMT +330 March 2017
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    U.S. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump appears at a campaign roundtable event in Manchester, New Hampshire, U.S., October 28, 2016

    Chinese Think Tank: US Will Pursue ‘Regional Hegemony’ Under Trump Presidency

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    On Friday, a Chinese government think tank drafted a report indicating that the US will pursue “regional hegemony” in the South China Sea under President-elect Donald Trump.

    A report by the the National Institute for South China Sea Studies suggests that a central feature of US foreign policy under the incoming administration will be "absolute control" over the contested region. 

    Although Trump did not discuss the South China Sea much on the campaign trail, Wu Shicun, who heads the organization, commented, "There will be no overturning change to U.S. policy in the South China Sea." 

    When speaking of China, the President-elect tended to focus primarily on economic issues between Washington and Beijing, accusing the country of being a "currency manipulator" and threatening to enact trade tariffs on imported Chinese goods.

    Beijing has responded to these threats by stating its intent to assert its trade rights under the World Trade Organization’s tariff regulations. Deputy international trade representative Zhang Xiangchen told a news conference on Thursday, "I think after Mr. Trump takes office, he will be reminded that the United States should honor its obligations as a member of the World Trade Organization," Zhang said through an interpreter. “And as a member of the WTO, China also has the right to ensure its rights as a WTO member." 

    Although the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan also have territorial claims in the South China Sea, Beijing resents what it perceives as attempts by Washington to block China’s growing influence in the region. Zhu Feng, director of the South China Sea Center at Nanjing University, said at the report’s launch that there will likely be “more continuity than change” during the Trump presidency. He reasoned that Trump will toe the same line as Republican presidents in the past, and simply increase military spending in the Pacific.

    The report read, "From the US perspective, China's large-scale construction activities in the South China Sea confirmed US suspicion that China intended to implement an anti-access/area-denial strategy."

    Zhu clarified that the report’s release was not a shot across the bow at Washington, but rather an attempt to avoid an arms race between the world’s two largest economies. 

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    Tags:
    tariffs, South China Sea dispute, Donald Trump, South China Sea, Beijing, China
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    • avatar
      peaceactivist2
      Don't be too quick to label him as a dev.il cause he may turn out to be China best friend in history
    • avatar
      beydety
      Fat chance of total control.
    • Californian
      It is almost inevitable that this area, and others further south, will be controlled by China to one degree or another.
      The nations in Southeast Asia will eventually have to come to some sort of accommodation with the PRC.
      For these nations Chinese aggressive behavior is nothing new.
      I doubt there will be some grand alliance of the smaller nations.
    • avatar
      goldcamshaft
      There is a reasonable probability that the President-elect will for some policies follow the furrow and may not be able to make changes. AIPAC, military complex, big business and banks are not going to sit back and see their future fortunes fade away with a newcomer. He will, however, on the business side of the equation, spread his wings out a bit more than with the political agenda. Drastic welcomed changes cannot be made overnight. Meanwhile, the political saboteurs will have a field day. Notice how the stock market in the united states has moved upwards in the last 3 weeks or so. Is this a co-incidence? I do not think so. Business people see that there is truth in some of his policies, especially economic ones. Making america great again may mean having a great "show" of strength. America was never strong by itself. Most of its perceived strength that the world was afraid of, came from the united force of its allies, who acted in unison to support the leader, right or wrong. This is now coming to an end, big time.
      The new President will be happy if america's greatness is gift-wrapped in - more money for all to spend in america and forget the transgressions abroad!
    • avatar
      michael
      logical assumption.
    • avatar
      Michael Hill
      Think tanks are just a bunch of people with opinions trying to guess one of many possible scenarios and take themselves seriously.
      No one knows what the future will bring. We guess and sometimes we're right. Look at the US election as an example.
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