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China, the European Union and the Developing World

China, the European Union and the Developing World

A Triangular Relationship

Leuven Global Governance series

Edited by Jan Wouters, Jean-Christophe Defraigne and Matthieu Burnay

China, the European Union and the Developing World provides a comparative analysis of Chinese and EU influence across five different regions of the developing world: Asia-Pacific; South and Central Asia; the Middle East and North Africa; Sub-Saharan Africa; and Latin America. While there is broad acknowledgement that the importance of China is rising across the developing world, this book offers a comprehensive and comparative account of the relative increase of the Chinese presence in the various different regions. It highlights its impact on the relationship between the EU and the developing world regions and shows how the rise of China affects the relations between these regions and Europe.

Chapter 5: The EU, China and Southeast Asia: divergent views of dealing with human security in Burma/Myanmar

Katja Weber

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, asian politics and policy, development studies, law and development, law - academic, asian law, european law, law and development, regulation and governance, politics and public policy, asian politics, european politics and policy, international relations, regulation and governance


This chapter examines the respective approaches of the European Union (EU), China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in dealing with non-traditional security (NTS) challenges by investigating their policies toward Burma/Myanmar – a source country of numerous such challenges. It argues that, although all members of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) see the need for multilateral solutions to fight organized crime, provide disaster relief, combat terrorism, prevent drug trafficking, etc., they differ with respect to the steps to be taken to protect human security in the Asia-Pacific. China, initially hesitant to join the ARF for fear that other members might try to contain it, has come to value the principal forum for NTS challenges in the Asia-Pacific since, like many ASEAN countries, it is a big proponent of non-interventionism, non-use of force and consensus decision making, that is, the confidence building mechanisms commonly referred to as the ‘ASEAN way’. The EU, as a strong proponent of human rights and the rule of law, has repeatedly criticized ARF members for allowing sovereignty-related norms to get in the way of the protection of human rights, but it has refrained from assuming the role of norm exporter.

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