David Sedney was  the U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia (2009-2013). He has extensive China experience from his time as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for East Asia (2007-2009) and Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing (2004-2007). Sedney is currently an independent analyst and a non resident senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Afghanistan is a surprising success story. From the massive turnout for the 2014 elections, to the unique unity government, the resilience of the economy, and, above all, the continued impressive performance of the Afghan National Security Forces, Afghanistan is proving to be a winning example of international intervention combined with local empowerment. Over the past few years China has played an increasingly prominent role in brokering talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government, and has ploughed investment into the country’s infrastructure and extractive industries. Is China positioning itself as a viable alternative aid and development partner to the US in South Asia? What is really driving China’s growing interest in the region? In neighbouring Pakistan, with a population nearing 200 million, the state faces immense economic, security and social challenges. Can the US and China work together to help forestall an increasingly destabilized Pakistan?


This event was jointly organised by Young China Watchers and the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy.

The Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy is a cooperative think tank between the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Tsinghua University. Based in Beijing, Carnegie-Tsinghua brings together leading policy experts and practitioners from China and around the world to engage in collaborative dialogue and research. 

Beijing – ‘China’s Growing Role in South Asia’ with David Sedney, former US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia
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