Long time ago, China's frontier is great wall, Yumen Guan, in Gansu Province( Northwest part of China) , and Jiayu Guan (Northeast part of China). Since Opium War , the tranditional defense strategy was overturned;Guangzhou ( the city in the south of China) and Shanghai ( in the delta of Yangtze River)began to replace Yumen Guan and Jiayu Guan to become the frontier.
Although the majority of chinese are settling in the coastal area of China, China are still a continental country with deeply-rooted idea of continental power. Robert Ross holds firmly that in East Asia, China with continental power and America with maritime power are the two actors in bipolar game. But with the expansion of overseas interests, China is beginning to shift its focus from the ground to the navy and their air force.
Thousand-ship Navy proposed by US Navy Chief Admiral Michael Mullen last year is a good way to bring chinese navy into more transparent international cooperation, although chinese is still not interested in it and even have doubts over it. Then how to win china's support in this plan?
First , to state American's welcoming China's peaceful rising. Secondly, to let China know the importance of stable and smooth sealane for its energy searching. Third, to pay attention to china's quest for sovereignty and natural resource interest in South China Sea.
Anyway, I think it still takes time for China to chcange its idea of continental power into maritime power, and because of the geography, China will never become a maritime superpower. Before China's expansion of its navy, it will benefitable for the United States to bring Chinese navy into cooperation.