South China Sea: Beijing will need more than charm to win over Asean, observers say

Beijing has been on a major charm offensive in Southeast Asia in recent weeks, but observers say it still has a long way to go to build trust in the region, given its multiple disputes with rival claimants to territorial, fishing and exploration rights in the South China Sea.“Southeast Asia is important to China not just for its individual countries but for the strategic significance of Asean [the Association of Southeast Asian Nations],” said Li Mingjiang, an associate professor at the S…

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