People’s Republic of China

CAPITAL: Beijing

POPULATION: 1381.6 million (2016)

LANGUAGE: Chinese

FORUM DIALOGUE MEMBERSHIP ESTABLISHED: 1990

ADDITIONAL FORUM DIALOGUE MECHANISMS: China-Pacific Island Countries Economic Development and Cooperation Leaders Forum (est. 2006)

POLITICAL SYSTEM: Communist /Socialist

HEAD OF STATE AND GOVERNMENT: President Xi Jinping

DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS IN THE PACIFIC: 8 (Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, FSM, NZ, PNG, Samoa)

SIGNIFICANT MULTILATERAL RELATIONSHIPS: Member of ADB, APEC, ASEAN/ARF, G77, GCF Board, IMF, SPTO, WB, WCPFC, WTO

Common areas of strategic interest

China hosted the 2017 Belt and Road Forum for International Co-operation (BRF) in Beijing. China has shown its commitment to working with the Pacific Region to explore more effective cooperation patterns and methods that fit the realities and needs of Pacific Island States, so as to make good use of the opportunities the Initiative brings to furthering common development goals and prosperity of the Pacific. China has also committed to green, low-carbon development and realization of the goal of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Belt and Road Initiative also emphasizes on building up a “green, intellectual and healthy” silk road.

Trade in the region

Trade statistics released in 2016 by Pacific Islands Trade & Invest China showed that the fourteen Forum Island Countries of the Pacific Islands Forum exported USD 2.5 billion worth of goods to China in 2015, up from USD 2 billion in 2014. China’s exports to the Forum Island Countries doubled from USD 2.5 billion in 2014 to USD 5 billion in 2015.

United Nations

China is one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council. It is a member of the UN Special Committee on Decolonisation (known also as the Committee of 24, or C-24) and the UN Human Rights Council (2015-16). UNDP China has continued to evolve and currently works in four main project areas: poverty, equity and governance; energy and the environment; disaster management; and South-South cooperation – an international platform facilitating development partnerships between China and other developing countries in the South.

Development cooperation

Chinese assistance to the region is a combination of loans and grant-based financing. Public reporting on development assistance is limited. According to the Lowy Institute, China has contributed USD 1.4 billion to the Pacific in bilateral foreign aid since 2006.