China's Far Seas Operations

U.S. Naval War College
McCarty Little Hall Auditorium
Newport, Rhode Island

May 9-10, 2012

The annual conference of the China Maritime Studies Institute (CMSI) is a key function of the institute and has the aim of stimulating focused research on Chinese maritime development.

This year's conference extended existing research concerning the link between China's naval and maritime development, China's evolving foreign policies, and America's traditional use of naval power.  Accordingly, the six panels for "Far Seas Operations" were intended to serve as an extension of the 2011 CMSI conference on China's Near Seas Strategy, which concluded that China's current strategic concept and force structure is based on a series of concentric layers in decreasing order of intensity: the Chinese mainland, the near seas, the western Pacific and near seas approaches, and the far seas.  Yet, China's global interests are increasing and recent operations in the Gulf of Aden, hospital ship operations in Africa and planned for the Caribbean, and ship operations in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf, in combination with new force structure and doctrinal developments, suggest the PLAN is also developing the capacity to operate beyond the near seas.  After assessing different panel-based questions, participants collectively formulated balanced assessments of capabilities, doctrinal development and plausible scenarios.


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