Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Hu Jintao's Grand Tour

The overseas visits of China's president Hu Jintao again underlies the emergence of China's grand strategy. Unlike the West, which seems to take Africa for granted, this is Hu's second high profile visit to the continent in less than three years. And then off to Saudi Arabia and talks with the Gulf states.

Securing China's access to resources is driving Beijing's approach. C. Raja Mohan notes:
Amidst China’s growing dependence on imported natural resources, both energy and mineral, and its massive export of manufactured goods to foreign markets have made the protection of sea-lanes in the Indian Ocean a high priority for Beijing and a major justification for the rapid modernisation of its naval forces.

Also, Abu Aardvark (aka Marc Lynch>notes the near-absence of coverage of Hu's visit in the U.S. media, even by his own Foreign Policy site.

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