National Interest: China in the Arctic and Antarctic: A Threat?
Thu October, 2020, Age: 3 years
China’s ambitions to become an Arctic power led to the launch, last year, of its first domestically-built, heavy-duty icebreaker. Through bilateral cooperation agreements with Northern European states, China has established a robust network of research bases, and has been open about its intention to open up new trade routes and expand its interests in the polar regions. In the South, China’s interests in the Antarctic are tied up with its relations with Latin American countries, many of which are understudied and potentially exploitative. Concerns that China may seek to upend longstanding norms in the region are rising. The Antarctic Treaty prohibits military activities and territorial expansion , but China may one day seek to abandon the treaty or push for reform in 2048.