New Kid on the Block: China Dealing Crushing Blow to US Supremacy in Asia
New Kid on the Block: China Dealing Crushing Blow to US Supremacy in Asia © REUTERS/ Takaki Yajima
13:40 09.04.2015(updated 14:06 09.04.2015) Get short URL
China is determined to subvert American supremacy in Asia, said Richard Javad Heydarian, adding that Beijing has brought numerous regional and international players under its umbrella due to its efficient economic charm offensive.
China has thrown down the gauntlet to the established Bretton Woods’ economic world order and American supremacy in Asia by launching new ambitious infrastructure projects in the region and dislodging the US from the South China Sea, noted Richard Javad Heydarian, an expert in international affairs and policy advisor in the Philippine House of Representatives.
“China’s astute economic diplomacy—aimed at challenging the Bretton Woods system (BWS) of global governance—and accelerated construction activities in the South China Sea, an artery of global trade, are chipping away at the very foundations of the decades-long US-led order in Asia,” Richard Javad Heydarian stressed.
The rapid development of the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the New Development Bank and the New Silk Road initiatives has simultaneously marked the triumph of Beijing’s soft power and Washington’s dreadful fiasco.
The expert elaborated, however, that “in fairness,” Beijing’s decision to challenge the established BWS was largely caused by emerging powers’ growing frustration over the lack of much-anticipated reforms in the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), blocked up by the US Congress in 2010.
Citing the volatilities of currency markets, China invests its vast financial reserves into Asian infrastructure projects. However, the expert noted that some international observers are inclined to consider particularly the AIIB a “Trojan horse for its broader strategic interests in Asia.”
China uses its financial resources to “purchase” the loyalty of its Asian neighbors, Mr. Heydarian believes, citing prominent Chinese scholar Yan Xuetong.
“The policy now is to allow these smaller [neighboring Asian] countries to benefit economically from their relationships with China. For China, we need good relationships more urgently than we need economic development. We let them benefit economically, and in return we get good political relationships,” Xan Xuetong pointed out.
While the US Asian allies, from the Philippines to Vietnam to Japan, are watching China’s steady expansion in the region, it seems that the United States has nothing to bring to the table in order to swing the balance in its favor.
The US’ vain attempts to boycott the AIIB have ultimately failed after the UK, Washington’s closest (European) ally, announced it would participate in the China-led initiative, paving the way for other European and Asian partners of the US to join.
Washington has found itself in a rather embarrassing situation, isolated and left by all. The situation prompted US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew to state grudgingly that the United States “welcome[s] China having a significant role in the global economic and financial architecture.”
Washington’s strategic primacy in Asia is at stake – it is clear that China is determined to change the established status quo in the region and obliterate America’s longstanding supremacy, the expert underscored.