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The Prospects of Indonesia–China Relations

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Six Decades of Indonesia-China Relations


Since the Reform Era in the end of 1990s, Indonesia and China showed a closer relationship. However, it did not mean that there were no obstacles at all. A number of economic and political-security issues such as trade, labor, and service, as well as maritime borders, could be potential threats to the cohesion of the bilateral relations. These problems are still the major challenges in efforts to improve Indonesia–China relations and will be more complex in the future. The changing power configuration among the major countries in the region after the Cold War has increased China’s global influence in the realm of politics, security, economic, and military. The development of China’s impressive power influence has attracted many people’s attention, ranging from policy makers, businessmen, and defense planners to academicians. In Indonesia and other countries in the region, some consider that China’s rapidly growing influence could be a serious challenge. The growing influence of China presents opportunities and threats to the sustainability of economic development and security. Therefore, in response to these developments, Indonesia needs to formulate a scalable foreign policy, i.e., one that can achieve Indonesia’s national interests maximally. The main pivotal question posed in the context of their bilateral relations is how Indonesia should address China’s current development.

There lies a sleeping giant. Let her sleep. For when she wakes, she will shake the world.

(Napoleon, A quote from “Fear of The Dragon,” Far Eastern Economic Review, 13 April 1995, p. 24.).

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Wuryandari, G. (2018). The Prospects of Indonesia–China Relations. In: Christin Sinaga, L. (eds) Six Decades of Indonesia-China Relations. Springer, Singapore.

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