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Changes in China-Australia Relations: From the Perspective of a Closer US-Australia Alliance

Author: Gao ChengSilver Editor Source: Blue Book Of Asia-PacificTime :2014-05-07 14:21:00

  Abstract:In 2012, the US and Australia signed an agreement for US military presence in Australia, which, plus the speculation about the upgrade of US-Australia alliance and a possible China intention behind the US enlarged military presence in Australia, serve as the focus of China-Australia relations of the year. This report analyzes strategic intentions aiming at China and the Asia-Pacific of the US military deployment in Australia and strategic considerations of Australia concerning China and the US. The upgrade of US-Australia military alliance may have profound influences on China-Australia relations and tendency in Australia’s future China policy. On the one side, under the strategic background aiming at China’s rise, the upgrade of US-Australia alliance and enforcement of Japan-Australia military relations under the US’s influences will pose challenges for China-Australia relations in the future. On the other side, it will be more and more difficult for Australia to realize the strategic goal of playing as a balancing middle power between China and the US in the Asia-Pacific. In the medium-long run, the contradiction between geo-politics and geo-economics will still control the direction of Australia’s China policy, but the independent space of its policy will possibly be subject to the US’s “Return to the Asia-Pacific” strategy to some extent.

  Key Words: China-Australia Relations;upgrade of US-Australia Alliance;garrison agreement;containment against China