China in 2028: friend or foe


China is a rapidly rising power in the modern world. By 2028, fifty years after Deng Xiaoping’s reforms, the ‘Middle Kingdom’ could be one of the world’s dominant cultural, economic and armed powers, with potentially enormous implications for the current international system. The European Union, despite being China’s biggest trading partner, currently has little geopolitical role in Asia, and must do more to prepare for a number of scenarios and security threats born of China’s rise. This Strategic Briefing advocates that Europe must:

• Construct the necessary institutions and take the required steps to gain a geopolitical foothold in Asia.
• Seek to ‘naturalise’ China into the prevailing world order, while containing any wild or unruly behaviour.
• Encourage constitutional reform in China and the expansion of human rights, especially in China’s allies.

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