China’s Momentum: The “One Belt One Road” Triple’s Securitisation

  • Paulo Duarte
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)


Paulo Duarte explores the security implications of China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative in the context of Chinese (re)emergence. It sees the OBOR project as being embedded with the triple securitisation of Chinese interests: economic, physical/military and soft powers. The author sees the OBOR as an initiative by a pragmatic and nostalgic China to maintain internal stability and to deal with potential economic constraints. At the same time, it might provide leeway for Beijing to move West in a context where its eastern frontier is faced with many uncertainties and even tensions.


  1. Annual Report to Congress. 2016. Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China, April 26. Office of the Secretary of Defense.Google Scholar
  2. Beijing Review. 2014. Silk Road to Prosperity. 57 (13): 1–19.Google Scholar
  3. Bhattacharjee, Dhrubajyoti. 2015. China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Indian Council of World Affairs. Issue Brief, May 12, 1–15.Google Scholar
  4. Blasko, Dennis. 2015. The 2015 Chinese Defense White Paper on Strategy in Perspective: Maritime Missions Require a Change in the PLA Mindset. China Brief XV (12): 3–6.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, Kerry. 2015. The Security Implications of China’s Belt and Road. The Diplomat, November 27. Available at
  6. Buzan, Ole Waever, and Jaap de Wilde. 1998. Security – A New Framework for Analysis. Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc.Google Scholar
  7. Carriço, Manuel. 2011. A Geopolítica das Linhas de Transporte na Ásia: Uma Incursão Analítica. Revista Militar (2511): 469–523. Retrieved from
  8. Chanda, Nayan. 2015. The Silk Road – Old and New. Global Asia, Yale Global Online. MacMillan Center, October 26. Available at
  9. Chang, Gordon. 2015. Will 2016 Bring the Collapse of China’s Economy? The National Interest, December 29. Available at
  10. Chaturvedy, Rajeev. 2014. New Maritime Silk Road: Converging Interests and Regional Responses. ISAS Working Paper, n.° 197, October 8. Institute of South Asian Studies National, 1–20.Google Scholar
  11. Clover, Charles, and Lucy Hornby. 2015. China’s Great Game: Road to a New Empire. The Financial Times, October 12. Available at
  12. Cohen, Craig, and Mekissa Dalton. 2016. Global Flashpoints 2016: Crisis and Opportunity. Center for Strategic and International Studies. Rowman & Littlefield.Google Scholar
  13. Çolakoğlu, Selçuk, and Emre Sakaoğlu. 2015. ‘Iron Silk Road’: Dream or Reality? Turkish Weekly, May 26. Available at
  14. Duarte, Paulo. 2017. Pax Sinica. Lisbon: Chiado Editora.Google Scholar
  15. Duiker, William, and Jackson Spielvogel. 2015 World History, Volume I: To 1800. Cengage Learning.Google Scholar
  16. Duque, Marina. 2009. O papel de síntese da Escola de Copenhague nos estudos de segurança internacional. Contexto Internacional 31 (3): 459–501.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Erickson, Andrew. 2015. Personal Summary of Discussion at China’s Naval Shipbuilding: Progress and Challenges. Conference Held by China Maritime Studies Institute at U.S. Naval War College, Newport, 19–20 May,1–5.Google Scholar
  18. Esteban, Mario, and Miguel Otero-Iglesias. 2015. What Are the Prospects for the New Chinese-Led Silk Road and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank? Elcano Royal Institute 23: 1–10.Google Scholar
  19. Foreign Affairs. 2015. A Strategic Seaport: Is Pakistan Key to China’s Energy Supremacy? March 5. Available at
  20. Frankopan, Peter. 2015. The Silk Roads: A New History of the World. London: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC.Google Scholar
  21. Future Watch Report. 2016. One Belt One Road: Insights for Finland. January. Available at
  22. Gao, Siqi. 2015 China’s Soft Power in the Arab World Through Higher Educational Exchange. Honors Thesis Collection. Paper 290. Wellesley College. Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Prerequisite for Honors in Political Science.Google Scholar
  23. Ghiselli, Andrea. 2015. The Belt, the Road and the PLA. China Brief XV (20): 14–17.Google Scholar
  24. Grimm, Sven. 2015. A New Silk Road – China’s Soft Power, November 9. German Development Institute/Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE), The Current Column.Google Scholar
  25. Holmes, James. 2016. China’s ‘String of Pearls’: Naval Rivalry or Entente in the Indian Ocean? Pakistan Defence, March 1. Available at
  26. ICEF Monitor. 2016. Education and the Exercise of Soft Power in China, January 13. Available at
  27. Kleven, Anthony. 2015. Is China Maritime Silk Road a Military Strategy. The Diplomat, December 8. Available at
  28. Lanjian, Chen, and Zhang Wei. 2015. China OBOR in Perspective of High-Speed Railway (HSR) – Research on OBOR Economic Expansion Strategy of China. Advances in Economics and Business 3 (8): 303–321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Lin, Christina. 2011. China’s New Silk Road to the Mediterranean: The Eurasian Land Bridge and Return of Admiral Zheng He. ISPSW Strategy Series: Focus on Defense and International Security (165): 1–23.Google Scholar
  30. ———. 2013a. China’s Strategic Shift Towards the Region of the Four Seas: The Middle Kingdom Arrives in the Middle East. Middle East Review of International Affairs 17 (1): 32–55.Google Scholar
  31. ———. 2013b. China’s Strategic Shift Towards the Region of the Four Seas: The Middle Kingdom Arrives in the Middle East. ISPSW Strategy Series: Focus on Defense and International Security (226): 1–24.Google Scholar
  32. Martinson, Ryan. 2016. The 13th Five-Year Plan: A New Chapter in China’s Maritime Transformation. China Brief XVI (1): 14–18.Google Scholar
  33. Minnick, Wendell. 2015. China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ Strategy. Defense News, April 12. Available at
  34. Morrison, Wayne. 2015. China’s Economic Rise: History, Trends, Challenges, and Implications for the United States. CRS Report for Congress, October 21, 1–44.Google Scholar
  35. Mullen, Rani, and Cody Poplin. 2015. The New Great Game: A Battle for Access and Influence in the Indo-Pacific. Foreign Affairs, September 29. Available at
  36. Orion, Assaf. 2016. The Dragon’s Tail at the Horn of Africa: A Chinese Military Logistics Facility in Djibouti. INSS Insight n.° 791, February 1. Available at
  37. Pandey, Sheo, and Hem Kusum. 2011. Wherewithal of China’s Grand Periphery Military Strategy. ISPSW Publications, 1–9.Google Scholar
  38. Pei, Minxin. 2015. The Twilight of Communist Party Rule in China. The American Interest, November 12. Available at
  39. Pejsova, Eva. 2016. Scrambling for the Indian Ocean. European Union Institute for Security Studies (EUISS). February. Brief Issue, 1–4.Google Scholar
  40. Philipp, Joshua. 2015. China to Extend Military Control to Indian Ocean. Epoch Times, October 25. Available at
  41. Preston, Felix, Rob Bailey, Siân Bradley, Wei Jigang, and Zhao Changwen. 2016. Navigating the New Normal: China and Global Resource Governance. A Joint DRC and Chatham House Report. The Royal Institute of International Affairs.Google Scholar
  42. Ramachandran, Sudha. 2015. China-Pakistan Economic Corridor: Road to Riches? China Brief, July, 15 (15). Available at
  43. Sahbaz, Ussal. 2014. “The Modern Silk Road: One Way or Another.” The German Marshall Fund of the United States, On Wider Europe Series, 1–8.Google Scholar
  44. Sakhuja, Vijay, and Gurpreet Khurana. 2016 Maritime Perspectives 2015. New Delhi: National Maritime Foundation.Google Scholar
  45. Sanguanbun, Sompong. 2015. China’s Soft Power Policy: Lessons and Implications. RJSH, Institute of Diplomacy and International Studies, Rangsit University 2 (2): 19–26.Google Scholar
  46. Sárvári, Balázs, and Anna Szeidovitz 2016. The Political Economics of the New Silk Road. Baltic Journal of European Studies. Tallinn University of Technology 6 (1): 3–27.Google Scholar
  47. Sayama, Osamu. 2016. China’s Approach to Soft Power: Seeking a Balance Between Nationalism, Legitimacy and International Influence. RUSI Occasional Paper, March 2016, 16p.Google Scholar
  48. Severson, Jesica. 2012. Countering the China Threat: China’s Goodwill Campaign in Foreign Policy 2002–2012. Presented to the Department of Political Science and the Graduate School of the University of Oregon in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science, September 2012.Google Scholar
  49. Sharma, Raj. 2015. Dragon Rises in Central Asia – Security and Economic Dimensions. Asia Times, August 3. Available at
  50. Sibal, Kanwal. 2014. China’s Maritime ‘Silk Road’ Proposals Are Not as Peaceful as They Seem. Mail Online India, February 24. Available at
  51. Singh, Anita. 2015. Unequal Partners: China and Russia in Eurasia. The Diplomat, June 3. Available at
  52. Snelder, Julian. 2014. Why China’s Silk Road Initiative Matters. The Interpreter, July 29. Available at
  53. Stone, Andrew. 2016. Why China Is driving a New Silk Road. Supply Management. CIPS, January 18. Available at
  54. Struye, Tanguy. 2009. « La piraterie maritime: un nouveau rapport de force dans l’Océan Indien ? », Chaire InBev Baillet – Latour Programme « Union Européenne – Chine ». Note d’Analyse (1): 7–13.Google Scholar
  55. Swaine, Michael. 2015. Chinese Views and Commentary on the ‘One Belt, One Road’ Initiative. China Leadership Monitor (47): 1–24.Google Scholar
  56. Tao, Xie. 2015. China’s Soft Power Obsession. The Diplomat, April 14. Available at
  57. Thayer, Carl. 2015. The Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam Race to South China Sea Defense Modernization. The Diplomat, January 23. Available at
  58. Tiezzi, Shannon. 2015. How China Seeks to Shape Its Neighborhood. The Diplomat, April 10. Available at
  59. Vandewalle, Laurence. 2015. Pakistan and China: ‘Iron Brothers’ Forever? European Union: Policy Department, Directorate-General for External Policies, June.Google Scholar
  60. Wu, Jiao, and Yunbi Zhang. 2013. Xi in Cal for Building of New ‘Maritime Silk Road’. China Daily, October 4. Available at
  61. Xinhuanet. (2014). Xi Eyes More Enabling int’l Environment for China’s Peaceful Development., November 30. Available at
  62. Yu, Chang Sen. 2015. The Pacific Islands in Chinese Geo-Strategic Thinking. National Center of Oceania Studies, Paper Presented to the Conference on National University of Samoa, 25–27 February, 1–19.Google Scholar
  63. Zhang, Yunling. 2012. China’s Regional and Global Power. East Asia Forum, February 6. Available at
  64. Zhao, Minghao. (2015). China’s New Silk Road Initiative. Paper Prepared for the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), October, 1–12.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paulo Duarte
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro de Investigação em Ciência PolíticaThe University of MinhoBragaPortugal

Personalised recommendations