The rise of China: opportunities and challenges for ASEAN from a Vietnamese perspective

Pham Thai Quoc


After nearly thirty years of instituting reforms, China has become a potent global economic force, and its emergence as a superpower has become a source of both anxiety and high hopes for countries constituting the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). On the one hand, the rise of China provides opportunities for ASEAN to increase exports and diversify export markets. On the other, there are territorial disputes between China and some ASEAN member countries in the South China Sea. This paper argues that the rise of China is inevitable and unstoppable. Nonetheless, ASEAN member countries can be better-off by strengthening cooperation with China. At the same time, however, ASEAN should strengthen its economic and political ties with other countries to provide a counterweight to China’s growing influence in the region.

By instituting reforms and opening and integrating itself with the world economy, especially after accession to the World Trade Organization, China boosted its economic power. The rise of China has brought both opportunities and challenges for many countries in Asia and the world. This research paper focuses on opportunities and challenges for ASEAN and Vietnam in view of China’s emergence as an economic power.


JEL classification: F00


China’s emergence; China-ASEAN cooperation; China-ASEAN tension

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