Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2018, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (9): 1288-1306.doi: 10.1007/s11442-018-1526-5

• Orginal Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Chinese overseas industrial parks in Southeast Asia: An examination of policy mobility from the perspective of embeddedness

Tao SONG1,2(), Weidong LIU1,3, Zhigao LIU1,3, Yeerken WUZHATI1()   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resource Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    2. The Collaborative Innovation Center of the Geographical Environment and Frontier Development in Southwest China, Kunming 650500, China
    3. College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2018-01-05 Accepted:2018-03-20 Online:2018-09-25 Published:2018-09-25
  • About author:

    Author: Song Tao (1983-), PhD, specialized in regional sustainable development and globalization. E-mail:

  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41701131, No.41701138, No.41530751;National Social Science Foundation of China, No.17VDL008


The development of overseas industrial parks is a key component of the Belt and Road Initiative and an expected experimental way of promoting inclusive globalization by inventing new forms of cooperation between China and local host countries. Policy mobility, a classic theory within international political geography addressing the connection between local and global policies, has implications for overseas industrial parks development. In this paper, we argue that policies are not easily moved directly from one place to another; instead, policies are embedded due to the role of local actors in policy mobility. This article first provides an overview of seven China-Southeast Asia economic and trade cooperation zones identified by the Ministry of Commerce, and analyzes their key participants. It then discusses policy mobility by looking into the roles of revenue, land, and talent in developing these industrial parks. The paper finds that these parks face challenges, such as the complicated geographical environments of host countries, huge pressure from enterprise investment capital, the lack of overseas service platforms, and underdeveloped agglomeration economies. In the light of the current situation, policy suggestions for the future sustainable development of overseas industrial parks are put forward.

Key words: overseas industrial parks, Southeast Asia, Belt and Road Initiative, inclusive globalization, policy mobility, China