UDC 628.785(510) 327(510)
Biblid: 0543-3657, 71 (2020)
Vol. 71, No 1178, pp. 5-26

Original paper
Received: 06 Apr 2020
Accepted: 24 Apr 2020

THE SILK ROAD LEADS TO THE MOON: CHINA’S OUTER SPACE STRATEGY AND ITS FUTURE DEVELOPMENT

FILIjOVIĆ Marko (Member of the Social Science Research Division (Politics and International Affairs Research Unit) at Athens Institute for Education and Research – ATINER, Athens, Greece), mfilijovic@yahoo.com

Recently, a growing number of countries in the world have been interested in the research of the so-called fourth dimension. Considering that conquering space provides numerous strategic benefits, as well as access to large reserves of untapped resources, some countries, particularly those with a high level of economic development, such as India and China, have demonstrated determination to join the prestigious ‘club of spacefaring nations’, which was reserved, until recently, for the United States, the Russian Federation, japan, Canada and the European Union. The paper analyzes the space strategy of the People’s Republic of China. After a brief account of the history of the development of China’s space activities, special attention in the paper is given to the importance of the Moon. Its conquest is substantial for acquiring prerequisites for further exploration of outer space, but is also relevant having considered the fact that it represents a very large and yet unused resource base. In addition, the author analyzes the military component of the realization of the cosmic ambitions of the most populous country in the world, i.e., investigates whether the actions of China contribute to the militarization of the cosmos or the development of the fourth dimension as a zone of peace and prosperity that the whole of humanity can benefit from. Subsequently, the paper analyzes the current geopolitical and economic effects of the development of China’s space strategy, with an overview of Beijing’s space plans for the forthcoming period. The author infers that China will make a major contribution to space exploration in the future, which, if it adheres to its current principles in international relations, may qualify it as a key player in the exploration of the space potential.

Keywords: China, outer space, resources, strategy, the Moon, the Silk Road, development