EU Countries

The meaning of systemic rivalry: Europe and China beyond the pandemic


  • Beijing’s handling of the pandemic has changed long-standing European assumptions about its reliability as a crisis actor and its approach to the European project.
  • Europe’s immediate medical-supply needs and dire economic situation will limit the scope of shifts in its China policy – for now.
  • But, on issues ranging from supply chains to ideological competition, European governments have rebalanced their view of what dynamics with China should look like in the aftermath.
  • The crisis is also intensifying demands from European parliaments, media outlets, and citizens for Europe to puts its China policy on a more open, accountable, and values-based footing.
  • Governments’ pursuit of a “business as usual” approach to Beijing is growing harder to sustain.

Borrell: EU won’t again bow to Chinese censorship

EU diplomat face enemies from within

EU investment deal with China likely to hinge on three key elements, says European trade official

  • Crucial European demands include subsidies to state-owned enterprises, access to the Chinese market and environmental issues, according to Ulrich Weigl
  • ‘Fundamentally China will continue being what it is, all at the same time – a partner, a competitor and a systemic rival’

Europe’s top three economies are now in recession. The real shock is still to come

China trying to divide and rule in Europe, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell says

  • Member states must ‘maintain the necessary collective discipline’ as China looks to take advantage of their different views on diplomacy, Spaniard says
  • Borrell also questions Beijing’s insistence on ‘telling the world’ about its aid efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic and its unique take on multilateralism

Changes in the EU-China relationship have been accelerating

Categories: EU Countries

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