As for China and Europe under The Epidemic, to Cooperate or Confront?

The speech delivered by the US Secretary of State Pompeo in the hometown of the late former US President Nixon on July 23 was widely understood as a manifesto of the new Cold War. Pompeo’s speech was equated with the American diploma George Kennan’s 8,000-character telegram returned from Moscow in 1946 in many comments. However, many mainstream medias have questioned this view. Political commentator in Financial Times said that although China had ambitious goals, it did not hope to destroy capitalism on a global scale like the Soviet Union did. Hence Pompeo’s words did not accord with reality.

Former Singapore diplomat and scholar of international issues Kishore Mahbubani recently said in an interview with Australian Independent Research Center Tom Switzer that China had expected that Chinese emerging would be under siege by the United States 10-20 years ago, but “it did not follow the old path similar to the Soviet Union’s expansion by hard power.” Today, the five allies of the US in the Asia-Pacific region—Japan, South Korea, Australia, the Philippines and Thailand have more economic and trade ties with China than that with the US.

In fact, the dissatisfaction from the US with China came more from the continuous strengthening of Chinese industrial production capacity and the ever-expanding trade deficit between China and the US. In addition, it seemed that China had not succumbed easily in the trade war launched by the United States, which intensified the anger of the White House. Observers’ comments showed that in the increasingly fierce Sino-US quarrels and actual confrontations, most countries, including many allies of the United States, were reluctant to be involved. Instead of taking a side, it would be better to be a cheerleader, which may be a true portrayal of the current European countries.

In this Sino-US game, Europe must be the object that both sides were striving for. This was not only a test of European political wisdom, but also an opportunity for Europe to restore its economic decline and revitalize its economy to seek unity. Reason told us that Europe should defend its own interests, although the EU has previously adjusted its positioning of China-EU relations—defining China as a negotiating partner, economic rival and systemic competitor. But as the EU industrial commissioner Thierry Breton said, “Europe will not become the battlefield between the US and China”,

So what are European interests? When the director of the European Policy Research Center and German economist—Daniel Gros was interviewed by Deutsche Welle, he believed that for ordinary Europeans, the topic of greatest concern now was “What will happen to epidemic prevention restrictions next? How about the economical situation? Is my job unstable?”. According to Gross’s knowledge now, the core mission of the European Union will be an economic rescue plan of hundreds of billions of euros for a long time. Can confrontation bring these benefits?

According to data from the European Commission, the daily turnover of European intermediate trade in 2019 was 1.5 billion euros. Helsblatt in German published an editorial on June 23 stating that “Whether in the past or the present, the economic abundance of German society is relevant to the emerging of China.  China’s position as an important partner of European trading cannot be ignored.

In fact, under the guidance of the US priority policy, the White House led by President Trump was also rude to Europe. As the German Foreign Minister—Heiko Maas said, although the alliance between Germany and the United States is of great economic, national defense and security significance, whether Trump or Biden will stay in the White House, the deteriorating US-German relationship cannot be restored to the previous state.

The Cold War will be not welcomed by Europe today and a new Cold War will be not hoped by it, neither. To overcome the epidemic, rejuvenate the economy and restore the prosperity of the past as soon as possible, strengthening international cooperation, certainly including cooperation with China, can only be the only way.

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The post As for China and Europe under The Epidemic, to Cooperate or Confront? appeared first on TheChinaBox.

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