Over the past few years, Europe and the United States have each approached China’s rise differently. Washington has moved to reduce its economic reliance on Beijing while castigating its increasingly assertive global stance. Brussels, on the other hand, has tried to insulate its business ties with China from its concerns about Chinese policies and ambitions. Europe and China jointly proposed the Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI), while German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emanuel Macron strived to keep the continent’s relations with Beijing on solid footing. Recently, however, it appears as though Europe has shifted course to align elements of its China strategy more closely with those of the United States. The CAI has been shelved, and France and Germany have announced plans to play a larger role in the South China Sea disputes. How will Europe manage its relationship with Beijing going forward? And how should Europe deal with worsening U.S.-China relations?
During a live recording of the China in the World podcast, Paul Haenle spoke with Rosa Balfour, director of Carnegie Europe, and Cui Hongjian, director of the Department of European Studies at the China Institute of International Studies, on the trajectory of U.S.-EU-China relations. This panel is the fifth of the Carnegie Global Dialogue Series 2020-2021 and is also available to be watched online.