Wednesday, 1 December 1999

From "The Economic Factor in International Relations"

By Wilson & Economides, p. 132.

In the late 1980s, Japan surpassed the US as the world's largest provider of foreign economic aid, and its share of the funds of the Development Assistance Council of the OECD jumped to 18 per cent. The stated objectives of Japan's aid programmes are primarily to assist in the economic development of less developed countries, while over 75 per cent of its aid packages are extended to countries in the Asian-Pacific region. Within this region, one of the recipients of Japanese economic assistance is the People's Republic of China. While the development of the Chinese economy is in the interest of Japan because of its market potential, Japanese leaders have a secondary objective in mind. China could be termed a developing economy, although it cannot be categorised alongside the African and poorer Pacific recipients of Japanese aid. China, nonetheless, is a potential military threat with its vast military and nuclear capability. In this sense Japanese aid serves the dual purpose of facilitating the creation of a lucrative Chinese market from which it can reap benefits, but also ensuring that China will not find any value in physically threatening Japan or its broader interests in the Asian-Pacific area.

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