Conflict of interests in the Middle East.. What is China’s secret plan? Why does America fear its penetration into the region?


The program “The Story Remains” (12/6/2023) followed the competition between America and China over the Middle East region, which includes the largest number of Chinese Belt and Road Initiative projects. Does China threaten America’s interests in the region?

The episode discussed with American and Chinese experts the dimensions of the expansion of Chinese influence in the countries of the Middle East, as US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken described China in presenting his country’s strategy towards it as “today it has become a global power with influence and influence.” He promised it the only country that intends to reshape the international system, and accused it of working to undermine the laws, principles and institutions that enabled it to achieve its economic growth.

And a report of the program stated that the US Secretary of State – who intends to visit China after a few days – recently made it clear in statements in Riyadh that his country does not give anyone a choice between it and Beijing, but rather tries to show the benefits of partnership with it.

In Beijing, the Chinese Foreign Ministry caught up with this statement, stressing the necessity of matching American words with actions, calling on Washington to stop publishing what it described as misleading information about China, and striking Chinese companies.

What does China want?

Regarding China’s intentions in the region, the expert on Chinese affairs, Samer Khair Ahmed, explained that China wants to extend its influence in various regions of the world, including the Middle East, but it does not seek to transform the global system into a unipolar one led by Beijing, while America – according to Samer Ahmed It wants to preserve the form of the world order that has existed for 30 years, but China wants a multipolar system.

And he expressed his conviction that China does not want to replace America, but it is using its initiatives to convince the countries of the world that through joint economic action a new future can be built, but America believes that this behavior is economic, but its interior is political and will affect global security, especially in the Middle East region. which is a major source of oil.

As for relations between Russia and China, Brian Harding, advisor to the former US Secretary of Defense and official of the Asia Department at the US Institute of Peace, indicated that Washington is concerned about the normalization of relations between the two countries, explaining that Washington’s allies also fear the rise of China and Beijing’s “aggressiveness” in the South China war, and this This makes it focus only on the economic side and not leadership, especially in the Middle East.

Regarding ways of cooperation between the two powers, Washington says that there is nothing to prevent the two countries from coexisting peacefully and contributing together to human progress. However, there are calls in the corridors of Congress to adopt a stricter policy towards Beijing, while American experts warn that a confrontation between the two powers is coming. It is impossible, especially since China is seeking to make the Middle East a main front for it.

Conflict of interests

It was also stated in the report – which was presented by the “The Story of the Rest” program – that many American analyzes agree that the Middle East region – and in the heart of it is the Arab world – will be a major focus in the conflict of interests between China and the United States, which has historically been associated with partnership and alliance relations with many countries. The region, especially in the Gulf, and China’s relations with the countries of the region extend for decades, but they have witnessed momentum in recent years.

The roots of this cooperation go back to the establishment of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum in 2004, as a framework for collective cooperation in many fields. Then, in 2016, China launched a document in which it talked about its policy towards the Arab countries, stressing that it is based on adherence to the principles of peaceful coexistence, mutual respect for sovereignty, equality and mutual benefit. The document focused on cooperation in various fields of energy, infrastructure, trade and investment, and satellites.

China penetration

It is noteworthy that during the Chinese President’s visit to Riyadh last December, he signed a strategic partnership agreement with Saudi Arabia, at a summit that brought the two countries together, followed by a Chinese-Gulf summit, and a Chinese-Arab summit, and China is the largest trading partner of the Arab countries combined, and the volume of trade exchange between the two parties reached 430. billion dollars last year.

Chinese investments in Arab countries amounted to about $214 billion between 2005 and 2021, making it the largest foreign investor in the Arab world. Twenty-one Arab countries joined the Chinese “Belt and Road” initiative, and some of them align their development strategies with the initiative.

In the diplomatic aspect, the remarkable development in Beijing’s expansion in the region emerged through the success of Chinese mediation last March in reaching an agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia to resume diplomatic relations after 7 years of tension, and as a result, Beijing offered to play a role in facilitating peace talks between the Israelis. And the Palestinians.

On the military side, Chinese arms exports to Arab countries are witnessing a remarkable increase, in light of the United States’ refusal to export some types of weapons to Arab countries, such as drones and the F-35.


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Conflict of interests in the Middle East.. What is China’s secret plan? Why does America fear its penetration into the region?

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