Maritime Dispute Insignificant for Vietnam as China Controls WaterPosted: January 26, 2017
The Diplomat says in its article yesterday titled “The Resurgence of China-Vietnam Ties”, “A visit to Beijing by Vietnam’s Communist Party chief underscored a major shift in Sino-Vietnamese bilateral relations…. According to Vietnamese news media, the four-day visit resulted in a joint communiqué, which among other points stressed upholding mutual political trust and both sides’ commitment to deepening their all-around strategic cooperative partnership. Trong’s trip and the sharply increased mutual trust it reflects will rehabilitate China-Vietnam ties in the near future after a few years of remarkable disruption.”
The article regards the new development as Vietnam’s response to Trump’s policies of America first and withdrawal from TPP as there is no hope for Vietnam to rely on the US to counter China whether economically or militarily. Without TPP, Vietnam cannot reduce its economic reliance on China.
However, the vital factor that has caused Vietnam to seek China’s favor is China’s control of the Mekong River, the source of freshwater for 2 million Vietnamese people. The article described Vietnam’s trouble caused by Chinese-backed mainstream dam-building projects in the river in countries close to China but hostile to Vietnam.
Anyway, Vietnam shall regard itself as lucky if China does not annex it as it did in the past when China had grown powerful.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on The Diplomat’s article, full text of which can be found at http://thediplomat.com/2017/01/the-resurgence-of-china-vietnam-ties/.