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"Politicization of economics" : the suspension of the Myitsone Dam in Myanmar

English Abstract

The year of 2014 has witnessed the fact that China's outward foreign investment (OFDI) outnumbered the foreign direct investment (FDI). Also, it achieved the third place globally. Nevertheless, many scholars still focus on China's FDI rather than China's OFDI. Among few literatures review about foreign investment, most of them concentrate on the successful ones, neglecting the failed ones. The history of China's foreign investment is not very long but it has its own characteristics. This research looks forward to studying the foreign investment cases, especially the failed ones to summarize the common characteristics of Chinese companies' foreign investments. In this paper, it is argued that "politicization of economics" has brought the suspension of the Myitsone Dam. There are four actors leading to this suspension- the Chinese state-owned companies, the Myanmar, the international participators, and the citizens and NGOs. The political purposes under the state-owned companies, the game of the political powers in Myanmar and the international actors, all these actors have aggravated the political overtones. II This paper adopts the Theory of Realism and Constructivism, with the supplement of the Geopolitics and other frameworks. The Realism illustrates the fact that different actors prioritize their own benefits when discussing with other parties in the international context, while from the perspective of constructivism, these actors hold a different attitudes towards the same case (the suspension of the Dam), due to their different positions. Still, there are some other reasons also contribute to the happening of this suspension, such as the environmental and cultural elements. While it is concluded that due to the "politicization of economics" originated from China, Myanmar and the international actors have finally led to the suspension of this project.

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Wu, Shang Wei


Faculty of Social Sciences


Department of Government and Public Administration




Investments, Chinese -- Foreign countries

Investments, Chinese -- Burma


Wang Jianwei

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