Sunday 16 May 2021 | 06:51 | SYDNEY
Sunday 16 May 2021 | 06:51 | SYDNEY


Sam Roggeveen


1 February 2008 09:24

My aim in talking about AMD's dealings with the Chinese navy (and for readers who have just discovered The Interpreter via the ABC's coverage of this issue: first welcome, and second, the blog post Leigh Sales reported on in her story is just below this one) has been to provoke two separate discussions:

  1. Australian arms export policy: What limits should we set on the goods and intellectual property that Australian entities can export to foreign militaries? And once we agree on those limits, do we have the legislative tools in place to enforce them?
  2. The Type 022 catamarans are one small piece of a much larger story about the growth of China's maritime power over the last two decades. It's not that China is rapidly catching up with the US (or for that matter, even Japan), but it now has the niche military capabilities, of which the Type 022 is one example, that would make it very difficult for the US to intervene in a Taiwan Straits crisis without risk of serious losses. That, in turn, must erode Taiwan's confidence in American security assurances, which is a serious reversal for US regional standing. 

I look forward to reader contributions to these debates, via the 'Email the Editor about this post' button below. I will publish the best emails on the blog.