The Philippines and the maritime security order in Southeast Asia: The risks of an appeasement policy on an expansionist China
College of Liberal Arts
Contemporary Chinese Political Economy and Strategic Relations
This article examines the shift in Philippine foreign policy under the Duterte Administration, and how this development unravels the volatility of Southeast Asia's open, global, and liberal maritime order. His predecessor, President Benigno Aquino, challenged China's expansive territorial claim in the South China Sea throughout his six-year term. However, President Rodrigo Duterte's actions and pronouncements are undoing the former president's geopolitical agenda of thwarting China's expansive design in the disputed waters. He distances the Philippines from the U.S., its long-standing treaty ally, and gravitates toward China. This stance aims to earn China goodwill so that the Philippines can avail itself of Chinese economic largesse particularly the enormous aids and loans from the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Nevertheless, by appeasing an expansionist power, the Philippines becomes complicit in China's long-term strategy of maritime expansion to ease the U.S. out of East Asia. In conclusion, the paper warns that the Duterte Administration might end up jeopardizing the country's territorial rights in the South China Sea and losing the trust and confidence of its security partners. More significantly, its appeasement policy on China might eventually lead to the erosion of Southeast Asia's global, open, and liberal maritime order. © 2019 Institute of China and Asia-Pacific Studies - National Sun Yat-sen University. All rights reserved.
De Castro, R. C. (2019). The Philippines and the maritime security order in Southeast Asia: The risks of an appeasement policy on an expansionist China. Contemporary Chinese Political Economy and Strategic Relations, 5 (3), 1035-1078. Retrieved from https://animorepository.dlsu.edu.ph/faculty_research/1822
Philippines--Foreign relations--China; China--Foreign relations--Philippines