China’s Global Environmental Engagement—Africa and Southeast Asia in Comparison

  • Meryl BurgessEmail author
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)


China’s approach to environmental protection in regions such as Africa and Southeast Asia is shaped by a diversity of factors which not only includes the importance of protecting the environment, but also other geopolitical factors. While China has developed similar environmental policies and committed itself to action plans with both regions through platforms such as the Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), different regions have different contexts, and China appears to engage somewhat differently within these contexts. Through its policy plans with ASEAN, China appears to be doing a noteworthy job on addressing environmental concerns, however, in reality, issues related to China’s economic ambitions, access to resources as well as securing claimed territories in regions such as the South China Sea is given more attention. On the other hand in Africa, China appears to address environmental concerns through different platforms and in practical ways such as establishing formal agreements with affected countries. The chapter demonstrates similarities in China’s engagement with environmental protection with both regions, differences in their approach, as well as considers their broader geopolitical motives for those differences.


ASEAN Environment FOCAC Policy Wildlife 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Chinese StudiesStellenbosch UniversityStellenboschSouth Africa

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