By Marc Lanteigne
One of the most prominent features of Chinese foreign policy since the turn of the century has been a growing emphasis on ‘cross-regional’ diplomacy. The Arctic region has become a highly visible test-case of Beijing’s international relations extending beyond the Asia-Pacific, but China’s goals in the Arctic have become a source of debate. Although China has not yet developed a concise Arctic policy blueprint, it is now possible to identify and examine Beijing’s primary interests in the region, and to consider how the Arctic states and other non-Arctic players may respond. This Occasional Paper explores the various issues that China is now addressing in the Arctic, including scientific and climate-related cooperation, access to resources, increased trade with Arctic states, the potential opening up of maritime trade routes in the region due to the retreat of sea ice, and participation in the Arctic Council and other developing regional organisations. It is published by the Centre for Arctic Policy Studies and will be available online, along with the other papers in the series, at www.caps.hi.is.