What Does Vietnam Want from the US in the South China Sea?

The Diplomat

Despite seeking a balance between the superpowers, Vietnam desires more robust security ties with Washington.

Derek Grossman

By Derek GrossmanJanuary 04, 2021   

What Does Vietnam Want from the US in the South China Sea?
Sailors signal to an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter as it hovers over the flight deck of the guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell during a training exercise in the South China Sea, July 22, 2016.Credit: Flickr/U.S. Navy

As the incoming Biden administration formulates its South China Sea strategy, one regional partner that looms large is Vietnam. Over the last few years, tensions between China and Vietnam in the South China Sea have remained high, impacting fishing and natural resource exploration in disputed waters. While the Biden administration is likely to continue the positive momentum in bilateral ties, it is less clear what specifically Hanoi seeks from Washington to help it effectively deter Beijing.

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A tale of 2020 in 20 McKinsey charts


See the story of this unique year through data visualizations from our Charting the Path to the Next Normal series.
This year, we launched a new series to highlight our best charts and data visualizations—the ones that deserved lives of their own outside the articles they were originally created for. Every weekday, we post a selection from one of our highly skilled data-visualization editors to our collection page, Charting the Path to the Next Normal. As we look back at the year that was, these daily charts tell a story about our changing world, from the early days of lockdowns and a tumultuous summer to ending the year on a hopeful note. While uncertainty remains, and each chart in isolation offers but one lens on the landscape, the themes emerging from the collection as a whole provide unique insight into the many disruptions 2020 visited on us.