Factors Determining the Peaceful Rise of China

International Relations Essay on Factors Determining the Peaceful Rise of China

Factors Determining the Peaceful Rise of China

The 21st century has impacted various changes on the spheres of international relations with China being a key player. The rapid development and rise of China has attracted the attention of the whole world (Guo, S. 2006, 238). Ideally, the growth of a nation is inherently reliant on internal factors. However, international conditions can significantly impact the process of growth. Because of this, the presence of the United States in Asia has prevailing impact on the growth of China. However, the political struggle between China and America is going on undertones (Lu, Y. 2012, 13). It should be noted that confrontations between the two big powers will impact mutual discussion.

This research attempts to establish whether China can peacefully rise without the destabilization of the Asian continent.

The study draws its arguments from the realism and interdependency theory with the goal of determining external conditions that will ensure the peaceful rise of China. There is no perfect theory that can be used to explain the prevailing global conditions. However, despite the numerous changes that have been made on the realism theory, the main objective of the theory is to explain the interdependence of common goals and mutual interests of countries. After the Cold War, countries in Asia embarked on the theory of win-win international relations. Therefore, realism explains that countries foster peace in order to pursue mutual objectives and interests. Besides, these nations also agree to resolve issues through dialogue, as a more cost effective avenue. The relationship between China and the United States depicts cooperation that is aimed at attaining mutual benefits (Hu, W. 2000, 418).

The two nations have realized the merits of working together towards achieving mutual goals and interests in various regional and international affairs. China and America speak often speak in one voice when it comes to matters of nuclear crisis on the Korean peninsula, the global public health and terrorism. The two power houses realized that they could not address these issues through military action. As a result of this, the cooperation between the two nations can potentially solve the various crises and conflicts. However, the question that comes up is whether the particular relationship will hinder the rise of China (Jones, C. 2007, 98).

Extraneous Factors that Determine the Rise of China

In 2004, China came into the limelight thereby, becoming a major subject of discussion on global economic platforms. This is aggravated by the fact that Asia has become an economic hub with China as the center of focus. Many economic analysts link the rise of China to low cost economy. However, others also associate it with the grappling US deficit, which is weakening the US dollar, and the rapid increase in oil prices. As a result of this, the whole world has its eyes on China. However, there is also a team of other economic analysts who have predicted the collapse of China on the basis of its domestic challenges. Although they are optimistic that China will overtake the US in the next thirty years (Jones, C. 2007, 101).

Numbers Showing Growth

China recorded a GDP of 1447 billion dollars in 2003. This was far much beyond the figures achieved by the US and Europe which stood at 11,004 and 11025 billion dollars (Gill, B. 2007, 47). However, the per purchasing power of China stands at 6719 billion dollars, which is almost a sixth of the world’s total. With regards to national rankings, China comes second. Besides, the country identifies itself with special characters like Confucianism. This is different from the traditional Western culture. China also has a large population that enables it to offer cheap labor. On the other hand, it is also strategically positioned at prominent oceanic and continental geopolitical locations. This aspect is further aggravated by the uneven development and western rule that is exercised in the country. It is as a result of these that the Superpower is committed to deterring the rise of China. Besides, the people of China are focused on growing the economy of their nation in order to enjoy decent living standards. This has agitated the people of China to push harder towards withdrawing their country from the symbiotic relationship that it has with America.

This has necessitated China to come up with objectives towards attaining a GDP of 4 trillion dollars with a 3000 per capita income in the next twenty years (Gill, B. 2007, 49). The short and long term objective of China is to close up the gap between it, the United States and Europe. However, China has altered its strategy from challenging the US to enhancing the living standards of her people. This is because of the primacy of China from America which offers a peaceful external environment. Thus, China is looking towards an export led approach. Hence, its foreign policy is aimed at developing the nation’s status quo.

China and the Outside World

Some analysts argue that the foreign policy of China is complicated. However, this is not true since the country is actually considered unilateral. This is impacted by the pressure from America, which is aimed at protecting her allies and other countries. Thus, China’s foreign policy is determined by the relationship that it has with the United States. In fact, the external environment of China can be defined as that of the US, it allies and other powers (Gill, B. 2007, 55).


China has been steadily growing in the 21st century. This has enabled it to attract the attention of all the world’s greatest power hubs, especially the US. However, the rate at which the country is growing depends on the political stability in the Asian continent. America has a profound presence in the region. Besides, it is also not decided on allowing the growth of China. China has however, opted to cooperate with America instead of waging war against it. If this mutual relationship is maintained, there is potential that China will experience peaceful growth and development.



Guo, S, 2006. China’s peaceful rise in the 21st century: domestic and international conditions. London: Ashgate Publishing Limited.

Jones, C, 2007. The American presidency: a short introduction. Madison Avenue, NY: Oxford University Press

Gill, B, 2007. Rising Star: China’s new security diplomacy. Massachusetts Avenue: The Brookings Institution.

Lu, Y, 2012. China’s soft power and international relations. Park Square: Routledge.

Hu, W, 2000. China’s international relations in the 21st century: dynamics of paradigm shift. Maryland: University Press of America


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