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Geopolitical overview

The geopolitical interests of China and India intersect in Myanmar. For China, Myanmar provides a land route to the Indian Ocean for gas and oil pipelines and access to natural resources. For India, Myanmar is the only land link to South-East Asia.

For two decades China has had virtually unchallenged strategic primacy in Myanmar because of the absence of the West and Japan, while Western sanctions have prompted Myanmar to turn to China for regime survival. However, over the years the relationship has turned into one of uncomfortable overdependence for a country that has traditionally treasured its autonomy and sovereignty. The conspicuous Chinese presence has also generated anti-China feelings among the local people.


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