Europe's response to China’s rise : competing strategic visions
Title: Europe's response to China’s rise : competing strategic visions
Author: MAHER, Richard
Citation: Asia Europe journal, 2017, Vol. 15, No. 2, pp. 133-145
Series/Number: [Global Governance Programme]; [Europe in the World]
ISSN: 1610-2932; 1612-1031
How should Europe respond to China’s growing economic and military capabilities, and to the more assertive foreign policy behavior it has generated? Should it seek to check or even resist China’s rise, or should it instead rely on a strategy of engagement and accommodation? Three distinct and coherent strategic visions exist that could guide Europe’s policy and strategy toward China and the Asia Pacific over the next 10 or 15 years. These range from narrow commitments to Europe’s own security and material prosperity to more ambitious and expansive efforts to shape and influence events in the Asia Pacific. These three strategic visions are (1) balancing, (2) engagement, and (3) retrenchment. After outlining and evaluating each strategic vision, this article then offers a brief review and analysis of Europe’s current approach toward China, which is a hodgepodge of engagement and retrenchment. The article concludes by examining what might cause Europe to pursue a clearer and more consistent strategic approach toward China in the years ahead.
First Online: 24 March 2017
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