China’s rapidly expanding Navy has, thus far, been primarily concerned with the sovereignty of the South China Sea. Their growing “green water” fleet is capable of asserting a great deal of authority within the regional (and globally important) waterway. China, however, still lacks the logistics and vessels to field a globally capable Navy like that employed by the U.S.
Enter the Belt and Road Initiative. The Initiative aims to make all trade routes lead to China, and thus offer President Xi Jinping the necessary material to construct the military he wants but doesn’t have.
By debating about trade deficits and North Korea, China has managed to carefully construct the image of a steady, forward-thinking, morals-driven nation. In direct conflict with President Donald Trump’s often unconventional diplomatic tactics. This image is on full display in a 71-page document released by the Chinese government on Monday outlining the ways the nation is working to circumvent the Trump administration’s “trade bullyism practices.” China doesn’t mince words, calling America’s recent behavior “the greatest source of uncertainty and risk for the recovery of the global economy.”
The report goes on and states that: