China Changes Tack on Water Politics by Fengshi Wu

16 Apr 2024

In their most recent article published by the Diplomat, Fengshi Wu discusses China’s role in future water politics.

The author explains that in a significant shift, China is reevaluating its approach to water politics, which has long been a source of tension with its neighboring countries. Sixteen major rivers originating in China supply fresh water to nearly 3 billion people across 14 Asian nations, constituting over a third of the world’s population. Traditionally seen as an “upstream bully,” China’s transboundary rivers have now become an opportunity for regional cooperation. By integrating transboundary water management and hydropower development into security, political, and economic negotiations, China aims to create platforms for regional peace and collaboration. As the world focuses on sustainable development and renewable energy, China’s role in this evolving landscape will be crucial, according to Wu.

To this the author adds: “Compared with traditional intergovernmental cooperation and negotiations, these may be more incremental initiatives, but they are aimed at building new foundations and consensus for long-term cooperation.”

You can find the full article here.

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