Research Fellow, University of Central Asia
Jan 11 , 2018
Beijing has long refrained from engaging militarily beyond its borders. However, as some recent reports suggest, this situation may soon change. Ferghana News reported that China will build a military base in the northern province of Afghanistan.
Dec 01 , 2017
The Chinese government hopes to create “a sincerity culture” and raise “honest mentality and credit levels of the entire society” through the Social Credit System. However, this system may evolve into a large-scale political tool. The system can be used to ensure citizens, private companies, public officials, and state institutions abide by the rules.
Oct 04 , 2017
Despite the uncharacteristic competitiveness of the upcoming Kyrgyz presidential election, both candidates have similar foreign policy goals: rapprochement with Russia and deepening financial ties to China.
Apr 27 , 2017
It has been four years since One Belt, One Road (OBOR) was first announced, but the prospects of OBOR’s impact on Central Asia remain unclear, while the commitment of Beijing to invest $40 billion into Central Asia’s poor and deteriorating infrastructure have not materialized.The diversity of views on OBOR demonstrate that OBOR is far from being a complete product. It is an evolving concept, which is yet to be finalized. Accordingly, in the context of Central Asia, it remains unclear what form OBOR will take. Is OBOR a qualitatively new endeavour to be implemented in the region? Or, is it simply a rebranded form of Chinese pre-existing infrastructure projects, unified under the aegis of the Silk Road discourses?
Jan 27 , 2017
Despite the benevolent ambitions of building a “community of common destiny,” the question remains open to what extent it is an attainable goal or rather a utopian objective. China shares border with 14 states all of which are very different: in geographic size, economic development, socio-political cohesion and degree of influence in the international arena.
Oct 03 , 2016
Skeptics of land reforms throughout the world fear that land redistribution in developing states may further victimize those who are already more disadvantaged and marginalized. And recent unrests in Kazakhstan due to Chinese investors demonstrate such concerns, highlighting land reform to be a complicated process with the potential of igniting social movements and mass mobilizations.
Aug 31 , 2016
At this stage, it will be premature to immediately associate the blast at the Chinese Embassy in Bishkek with the larger context of ethnic separatism in China or Islamic radicalism in Central Asia, despite the high likelihood that Uighur separatist groups will be blamed for the attack in Kyrgyzstan. In general, this blast comes as an unpleasant and unexpected surprise both for Kyrgyzstan and China.
Aug 17 , 2016
Incomprehension of the Chinese foreign policy goals in Central Asia by local elites, in addition to a historic legacy of confrontation between the Chinese empire and Central Asian nomadic tribes, serves as a fertile ground for the popularisation of speculative knowledge. As a result, Chinese initiatives in the region are clouded by rumours and conspiracies.
Jul 05 , 2016
Sport may emerge as one of those solutions that foster inter-cultural understanding between China and Central Asian states without being vigorously criticized for hidden political agendas. Sport has the potential to transcend socially constructed borders and divisions because it embodies a universal medium of communication.
Apr 14 , 2016
EU engagement in Central Asia has been reactive than proactive. U.S. withdrawal in Afghanistan, and the amalgamation of EU expertise and the Chinese financial power may significantly help mitigate the effects of poverty in Central Asia. Yet, at this stage these prospects are detached from the reality and embody rather normative aspirations.