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Research Report

Facing China’s rise:: Guidelines for an EU strategy

Philip Andrews-Speed
Axel Berkofsky
Peter Ferdinand
Duncan Freeman
François Godement
Eberhard Sandschneider
Antonio Tanca
Marcin Zaborowski
Edited by Marcin Zaborowski
Copyright Date: Dec. 1, 2006
Pages: 129
OPEN ACCESS
https://www.jstor.org/stable/resrep07000
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 9-12)
    Marcin Zaborowski

    With its booming economy, China is emerging as the key player in Asia-Pacific and possibly as the world’s next superpower. So far, China has mainly developed as a ‘trading power’ – concentrating on the expansion of its economy and retaining a relatively restricted international role. However, there is no doubt that the dynamic rise of China’s poses major challenges to the status quo in the region with consequences for its neighbours and other powers present there, such as the US and, increasingly, also the EU.

    Clearly, China has always been a power to be reckoned with, but over the last...

  2. Part I: China’s domestic transformation and the changing world order

    • (pp. 13-26)
      Duncan Freeman

      In recent years both the general public and the political classes in Europe have come to realise that the economic transformation of China that began in the late 1970s has a direct impact on their interests. Today what happens in China is given as much attention as events in almost any other nation, and this is especially true in the economic field. ‘Market moving’ events today are just as likely to be occur in China as in any other part of the world. There are good reasons for this. Decisions made in China now can have an immediate as well...

    • (pp. 27-38)
      Peter Ferdinand

      The EU has a clear interest in the democratisation of China. This is not just because the EU is a ‘club’ of democracies. A democratic China would be more transparent and predictable. It would also greatly reduce, if not remove, the potential source of a security confrontation with Taiwan. The establishment of a democratic political system on the mainland would undercut Taiwanese justifications for separatism. Neighbouring states would see the security benefits that would derive from this, and it would facilitate détente with the US.

      On the other hand, as is emphasised elsewhere in this Chaillot Paper, the EU also...

    • (pp. 39-48)
      Eberhard Sandschneider

      For many years, Western debates on China have been focused on China’s enormous economic success. The West has been impressed and at the same time intrigued by the formidable economic progress of what is still – nominally at least – a Communist country. And Western nations have been more than willing to compete with each other, both within Europe and across the Atlantic, when it comes to grabbing a share of China’s huge market. In recent months, however, both in the US and in Europe a more sombre perspective has overshadowed relations with China. European observers have started to realise...

  3. Part II: China’s foreign policy

    • (pp. 49-70)
      François Godement

      China’s rise is indisputable. This is clearly demonstrated by its position as an international trade giant, its ever-increasing military spending, and its hyperactive regional diplomacy both in Asia and throughout the developing world. The global dimension is reinforced by China’s revamped public diplomacy, which makes full use of modern media and web communications, and by Chinese migration and the growth of Chinese tourism abroad. China’s expansion is also served by its so-called strategic partnerships – even if some of these are undercut by the contentious territorial claims which complicate its relations with many of its neighbours. These are all facts...

    • (pp. 71-82)
      Philip Andrews-Speed

      As China’s economy continues its sustained and rapid growth, so does its demand for energy and other natural resource raw materials. China is now the second largest consumer of primary commercial energy after the USA, accounting for 15% of the world’s total. Over the four-year period from 2002 to 2006, China’s total commercial energy consumption grew by more than 50%, increasing as rapidly as or even more rapidly than its GDP. This soaring demand for energy has placed a huge strain both on the economy and on the natural environment in China. As a result, energy is now at the...

    • (pp. 83-100)
      Marcin Zaborowski

      There is no doubt that US-China relations are of major importance for the future of the global order and especially for international relations in East Asia-Pacific. No other power challenges America’s global prominence to the extent that China does and this is likely to be even more the case in the future. The rise of China has already challenged the balance of power in East Asia and America’s position in the region. China’s growing economic presence in Africa, the Middle East and Latin America has provided an alternative to the US’s (and the EU’s) influence there and has weakened America’s...

  4. Part III: Assembling an EU-China strategy

    • (pp. 101-114)
      Axel Berkofsky

      The parameters of the EU-China relationship are now officially based on implementing their so-called ‘strategic partnership’. But is it true to say that the EU’s China strategy is ‘naïve’ or ‘unrealistic’ in this regard, as some European as well as American academics and analysts have argued over the last three years?¹ The democratic EU, these critics argue, differs too much from non-democratic and autocratic China in its approaches towards the conduct of foreign and security policies, global governance and international security. The EU Commission and the EU Council, on the other hand, maintain that engaging China politically and economically is...

    • (pp. 115-122)
      Antonio Tanca

      The last few years have witnessed a dynamic development of the EU’s interest in the East Asian region, to a large extent driven by the phenomenon of China’s rise. While the EU is of the view that its East Asian strategy should not be focused on China alone, there is no doubt that Beijing’s growing regional and international status calls for special attention on the part of Brussels. For example, the recent nuclear and missile crisis in the Korean Peninsula and the role played by Beijing in finding a diplomatic solution to it, clearly demonstrate that the emergence of China...