Wen Tianpeng and Chen Xing, Taiwan scholars at Nanjing University and Beijing Union University, respectively, explore the motivations behind what they perceive as a reorientation of Japan’s strategy vis-à-vis Taiwan and implications for Japan-China relations going forward. In their view, the dynamics of U.S.-Japan-China ties are driving Tokyo to depart from its traditionally “low profile” position on Taiwan. However, Wen and Chen argue that Japan’s strong economic ties to China will ultimately prevent it from revising its official “One China” policy.
Xiu Chunping, a Taiwan scholar at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, argues that China-Japan relations will deteriorate in the foreseeable future as a result of Tokyo’s growing interest in regional security, particularly in and around the Taiwan Strait. She argues that Japan is increasingly willing to provide greater and more explicit economic, diplomatic, and military support for Taiwan, and draws on a complex mix of historical, geopolitical, and domestic political factors to explain this perceived shift – including Japan’s colonial legacy in Taiwan, power shifts between Japan and China, and the work of “Taiwan independence forces.”
Cai Liang, a researcher focused on regional issues in Asia at the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, argues that Japan is no longer maintaining purely unofficial relations with Taiwan that center around trade, investment, and cultural exchange. This is evident, Cai holds, in what he sees as Tokyo’s efforts to internationalize discussion of Taiwan and emphasize shared values. Cai attributes this perceived change largely to the dynamics of rising strategic competition between the United States and China.
In this contribution to a bi-annual review of the international strategic landscape published by Peking University, a top security analyst argues that strengthening crisis management is now a “primary and strategic task” for China’s security relations with the United States and Japan. He soberly assesses each relationship’s existing crisis management mechanisms, and makes recommendations for leaders in all three countries.