Vietnam, China and the New Silk Road

Peace and Freedom

Vietnam’s president will be attending the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing. It will be interesting to see how Vietnam tries to improve its negotiating position with China, writes DW’s Frank Sieren.

By Frank Sieren

Vietnam Anti-China Proteste in Hanoi (Reuters/Kham)

Whether you are a global super power or not, it is always important to try to get along with the neighbors. That’s because such problems can quickly end up on your doorstep. For China, this is particularly the case with its neighbor Vietnam: there has often been conflict. This is what makes Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang’s attendance at the Belt and Road Forum on Sunday and Monday so interesting. The Forum will serve to build up China’s cooperation with countries along the former Silk Road.

A long history of conflict

Only recently were the two states at loggerheads over the disputed islands in the South China Sea. In 2014 China erected an oil rig in…

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