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Chinese President’s Visit To Europe

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CHINESE PRESIDENT’S VISIT TO EUROPE

On his first visit to Europe in five years, Chinese President Xi Jinping appears intent on seizing opportunities to loosen the continent’s bonds with the United States and forge a world freed of american dominance.

The Chinese leader has chosen three countries to visit —

  • France                        They see China as a necessary
  • Serbia and                counterweight to USA and are
  • Hungary                    eager to bolster economic ties.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE VISIST

At this time of a elongated war (Russia-Ukraine), with most of Europe supporting Ukraine & China declaring its ‘No Limit Friendship’ with Russia, it will be a bold step by China to connect with the European countries and project itself as a major player in global geopolitics.

TIMING OF THE VISIT

For Europe, the visit will test its delicate balancing act between China and the United states, and will no doubt be seen in Washington as a none-too-subtle effort by Xi to divide Western allies.

Xi Jinping has timed his arrival at his second stop, Serbia, to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the deadly NATO bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade during the Kosovo war.

That mistaken strike on May 7, 1999, for which the White House apologized, killed three Chinese journalists and ignited furious protests around the US Embassy in Beijing.

Intent is to highlight the NATO overreach, not respecting international laws & Hypocrisy.

THE EU CHINA COOPERATION

The official doctrine of the 27-member European Union defines China as “a partner for cooperation, an economic competitor and a systemic rival.” If that seems a mouthful, and a perhaps contradictory one, it is because the continent is torn between how to balance economic opportunity in China with national security risk, cybersecurity risk and economic risk to various industries.

In March, China Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters that Europe’s Formula was unworkable. “It’s like driving to a crossing and finding the red, yellow and green lights all on at the same time. How can one drive on?”

Now, Xi would like to ease the lights toward green.

WHAT FRANCE OPINES ABOUT EUROPE-USA EQUATION?

President Emmanuel Macron, has often made the Gaullist point that Europe “must never be a vassal of the United States,” as he did last month at a speech at the Sorbonne.

The French leader insists that the survival of the EU depends on “strategic autonomy” and developing the military resilience to become a “Europe power.”

He rejects the notion of “equidistance” between China and the United States — France is one of America’s oldest allies but wants to keep his options open.

All of this is music to Xi’s ears.

WHY FRANCE, SERBIA & HUNGARY?

FRANCE:

  • Macron is trying to bring a third way in the current global chaos. He is trying to walk a fine line between the two main superpowers.
  • Just over a year ago, Macron was lavishly entertained during a visit to China that ended with a Sino-French declaration of a “global strategic partnership.”
  • The French leader echoed the Chinese lexicon of a “multipolar” world, freed of “blocs” and the “Cold War mentality.”

SERBIA & HUNGARY:

  • Serbia, where China is the second largest trading partner, and
  • Hungary, where its prime minister, Viktor Orban, has backed massive Chinese investment and used his country’s position as a European Union member to dilute criticism of China.
  • Both countries bridle at American power.

 

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