Undermining Western democracy promotion in Central Asia: China’s countervailing influences, powers and impact

Gordon Crawford, Aijan Sharshenova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)
74 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article examines whether and to what extent China’s
involvement in Central Asian countries undermines the
democracy promotion efforts of the European Union and the
United States. Findings confirm that China does indeed challenge
Western efforts, but in an indirect way. First, Chinese provision of
substantial and unconditional financial assistance makes Western
politically conditioned aid appear both ungenerous and an
infringement of sovereignty. Second, the Shanghai Co-operation
Organisation, inclusive of China’s leadership role, creates an
institutional means through which the (semi-)authoritarianism of
member states is legitimized and challenges Western emphasis on
democracy and human rights. Finally, by the power of its own
example, China demonstrates that democracy is not a prerequisite
for prosperity, the rule of law and social well-being
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453-472
Number of pages21
JournalCentral Asian Survey
Volume36
Issue number4
Early online date29 Sep 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sep 2017

Bibliographical note

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Central Asian Survey on 29 September 2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/02634937.2017.1372364

Keywords

  • China; Central Asia; democracy promotion; autocracy promotion

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