Foreign Policy and Political Changes in Post-Junta Myanmar

Authored by: Renaud Egreteau

The Routledge Handbook of Asian Security Studies

Print publication date:  October  2017
Online publication date:  October  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138210295
eBook ISBN: 9781315455655
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315455655-25

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Abstract

Because of its geostrategic position and whatever the system of government in place, Myanmar must cope with a series of key security challenges. 1 The country is sandwiched between two emerging giants with global ambitions, China and India. It boasts a 2,000km-long coastline opened to the Indian Ocean, through which a large part of the world’s seaborne commerce transit. It offers a gateway to, and from, continental Southeast Asia. In the twenty-first century, this peculiar geographical situation may present considerable opportunities for regional growth and future development in a country long kept away from global flows and Asia’s economic boom. 2 But it can also contribute to increased concerns among Burmese ruling elites, starting with the armed forces (or Tatmadaw), over the potential sway neighbouring states, global powers and international institutions may seek to gain in a region known for its abundance of underexploited natural resources. 3

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