Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
Sudan Looks East

Sudan Looks East: China, India and the Politics of Asian Alternatives

Series: African Issues
Copyright Date: 2011
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 216
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    Sudan Looks East
    Book Description:

    By successfully turning to China, Malaysia and India from the mid-1990s, amidst civil war and political isolation, Khartoum's 'Look East' policy transformed Sudan's economy and foreign relations. Sudan, in turn, has been a key theatre of Chinese, Indian and Malaysian overseas energy investment. What began as economic engagements born of pragmatic necessity later became politicized within Sudan and without, resulting in global attention. Despite its importance, widespread sustained interest and continuing political controversy, there is no single volume publication examining the rise and nature of Chinese, Malaysian and Indian interests in Sudan, their economic and political consequences, and role in Sudan's foreign relations. Addressing this gap, this book provides a groundbreaking analysis of Sudan's 'Look East' policy. It offers the first substantive treatment of a subject of fundamental significance within Sudan that, additionally, has become a globally prominent dimension of its changing international politics. Daniel Large is research director of the Africa Asia Centre, Royal African Society at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and founding director of the Rift Valley Institute's digital Sudan Open Archive. Luke A. Patey is a Research Fellow at the Danish Institute for International Studies.

    eISBN: 978-1-78204-009-5
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

Export Selected Citations Export to NoodleTools Export to RefWorks Export to EasyBib Export a RIS file (For EndNote, ProCite, Reference Manager, Zotero, Mendeley...) Export a Text file (For BibTex)
  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-ix)
    (pp. x-xii)
  6. Introduction Sudan Looks East
    (pp. 1-34)

    Anyone visiting the 2010 Shanghai World Expo witnessed a rather different image of Sudan from that commonly portrayed in international headlines. This was a vision of Sudan enjoying peace, prosperity and flourishing development. Proudly on display were the provisions of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the government of Sudan in Khartoum and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A). The 22-year-long civil war between the two sides left over two million Sudanese dead and uprooted millions more. Despite the achievements of this historic agreement, the message in Shanghai seemed far away from the situation in Sudan at the time....

  7. 1 Sudan’s Foreign Relations since Independence
    (pp. 35-51)

    Sudan’s foreign relations have reflected a number of domestic and international factors. The long history of indigenous state formation on the middle reaches of the Nile had always involved relations with neighbouring areas, and sometimes wider international relations as well. Nubian and Meroitic civilisation in Sudan’s far north is now seen as being more distinct from Pharoanic Egypt than in the past, including clashes between the two. The Coptic Christian states that succeeded Meroe also maintained changing relations with both Egypt to the north and Abyssinia (Ethiopia) to the south-east. Following the decline of those states and the emergence of...

  8. 2 The Oil Boom & its Limitations in Sudan
    (pp. 52-69)

    Sudan’s economy has been transformed since the early 1990s by Asian investment, particularly in the oil sector. This chapter argues that the Sudanese economy in the twenty-first century is largely driven by oil –and the oil sector is dominated almost entirely by investment from Asian countries. Historically, Sudan depended on agriculture for most of its economic growth and export earnings. But the discovery of oil, and the simultaneous expansion of internal political tensions that left traditional Western partners largely unable to participate in its exploitation, offered a number of Asian state oil companies their first major opportunity to invest heavily...

  9. 3 Local Relations of Oil Development in Southern Sudan Displacement, Environmental Impact & Resettlement
    (pp. 70-86)

    The official end of fighting between the Government of Sudan and the SPLM/A marked a halt to the egregious human rights abuses, including massacres and mass civilian displacement, associated with Sudan’s oil sector. But a significant improvement in the quality of life for local people in and around the oil areas remained elusive. Instead, old problems, including the destruction of property, uncompensated land expropriations and environmental pollution, have persisted, serving to fuel resentment against the oil companies, which have been accused of complicity in the abuses committed during the war.¹ This chapter examines local experiences and conditions in Southern Sudan’s...

  10. 4 India in Sudan Troubles in an African Oil ‘Paradise’
    (pp. 87-101)

    In May 2008, a group of Indian oilmen found themselves in a rather precarious situation. Outside the town of Heglig in Sudan, the four oil technicians had been surrounded at gunpoint. The armed men who attacked them were from the local Misseriya ethnic group living in the oil area of Southern Kordofan state. They had seen little benefit from oil development since the central government in Khartoum first began to export oil from the region in 1999, and now in response were directing their grievances directly towards the oil companies.

    After hearing about the kidnapping, the Indian Ambassador in Khartoum,...

  11. 5 Malaysia–Sudan From Islamist Students to Rentier Bourgeois
    (pp. 102-119)

    China is usually cited as the outstanding partner of Sudan’s governing regime. But other East Asian state partners have also been playing important roles in relations with Khartoum. Although not as important as China, three in particular deserve attention. Japan and South Korea share a low profile and, although diplomatically allied with the West – both are members of the OECD and South Korea joined its Development Assistance Committee in 2010 – have dealt with Sudan in an autonomous manner, not willing to damage their own interests. They remained silent when their Western allies were vocal about the crisis in Darfur and...

  12. 6 ‘Dams are Development’ China, the Al-Ingaz Regime & the Political Economy of the Sudanese Nile
    (pp. 120-138)

    Hydro-electric dams have long fascinated policy-makers, who have equated them with ‘development’. In recent decades, they have attracted criticism because of the ecological, social and cultural costs associated with their construction. No country in the world has more experience with dam-building than China, currently involved in the construction of more than 250 dams outside its borders. Beijing does not simply provide the capital and technical expertise for these ‘temples of modernity’, but increasingly its growth model, heavily reliant on infrastructure and state control, fascinates its partner countries and many African regimes crave Chinese-built dams as symbols of civilisation and prestige....

  13. 7 Genocide Olympics How Activists Linked China, Darfur & Beijing 2008
    (pp. 139-156)

    As negotiations to end Sudan’s decades-long North-South civil war progressed closer to a final peace agreement in 2004, a UN Human Rights Coordinator for Sudan cautioned that a region called Darfur in the west of the country now posed ‘the world’s greatest humanitarian crisis’.¹ Since 2003, the government of Sudan had been waging war against rebel groups in Darfur. Over the summer of 2004, a group of concerned organisations and individuals in the United States formed the Save Darfur Coalition (SDC) to highlight humanitarian concerns and advocate conflict resolution. Expanding the scope of its advocacy campaigns, the SDC sought additional...

  14. 8 Southern Sudan & China ‘Enemies into Friends’?
    (pp. 157-175)

    Attention to Sudan’s relations with China has overwhelmingly referred to northern Sudan, but the limitations of this approach and the need to appreciate a more complex, plural and fluid set of political dynamics within Sudan became increasingly obvious after the CPA. An important trend since 2005, long overshadowed by Darfur, has seen Southern Sudan develop relations with China.¹ The CPA created a new political reality for Sudan’s China relations by establishing a ‘one Sudan, two systems’ framework and including the people of South Sudan’s right of self-determination to be exercised via a referendum vote on remaining in or seceding from...

  15. Conclusion China, India & the Politics of Sudan’s Asian Alternatives
    (pp. 176-194)

    On 30 August 1999, the first Sudanese crude oil exports were dispatched from the new port of Masra al-Bashir on the Red Sea. The inaugural shipment heading for Singapore and Asian markets was celebrated as a government victory against external adversity and the means of defeating its internal adversaries: ‘We have defeated all the foreign enemies wishing to stop the export of the oil. We must now defeat the internal enemy who may try to halt the full utilisation of the oil revenue.’¹ Together with the opening of the Khartoum refinery, this landmark event distilled the material success of Sudan’s...

  16. INDEX
    (pp. 195-204)
  17. Back Matter
    (pp. 205-205)