China’s Declaration Creates Ripple Effect Throughout Asia
It is clear Japan and China do not like one another. But, like sparring brothers and sisters, their futures are linked nonetheless. Time magazine’s Michael Schuman notes that a continued dissolution of relations could have an economic impact on the second and third largest economies.
“For two countries that so distrust each other, they sure do a lot of business together. Total trade between China and Japan was almost $334 billion in 2012. For Japan, struggling to emerge from two decades of economic malaise, exports to burgeoning China are a key source of growth. Companies from Sony to Toyota desperately need Chinese consumers to buy their cars and TVs to offset a sluggish home market and compete with rivals like GM and Samsung. But the relationship is hardly a one-way street. China imports more from Japan than any other country, and many of those goods are indispensable to China’s economic advance — high-tech components to fuel its export machine and capital equipment for its expanding industries,” he notes.
The air zone dispute also is affecting other relationships in the region. China and South Korea have recently been enjoying improved relations, partly as a consequence of South Korea’s discontentment with Japan, but J. Berkshire Miller wonders whether the détente will continue in light of China’s aggressive posture of late.
“The reaction from Korea to the ADIZ announcement has been bristling. Seoul reportedly summoned a minister from the Chinese Embassy in Korea to denounce the unilateral ADIZ and has warned Beijing that it will not comply with these rules,” he writes.
“But now, five months after the Park-Xi summit, it seems that relations between China and South Korea may be creeping back to their normal state: opportunity coupled with mistrust. The ADIZ flap has the potential to exacerbate other simmering coals in the China-Korea relationship, such as their dispute over Baekdu Mountain or concerns over cyber security. While both sides will look to mitigate this disagreement, the ADIZ still elevates the potential for a miscalculation that would effectively erase the goodwill from the June summit.”
While not recognizing China’s claims to the islands, the State Department did issue guidance for civilian aircraft that stated “U.S. carriers operating internationally will operate consistent with NOTAMs (Notices to Airmen) issued by foreign countries. Our expectation of operations by U.S. carriers consistent with NOTAMs does not indicate U.S. government acceptance of China’s requirements for operating in the newly declared ADIZ.”