As its international profile and interests grow, China's foreign policies – now those of a great power – are coming under increasing scrutiny. Here are the four fault lines that are forming in how Beijing deals with the world.
EU-China relations are maturing, and this is allowing a more frank and pragmatic approach to negotiations. The red carpet treatment for Herman Van Rompuy when he visited Beijing recently is testimony to this.
Cancun will not achieve a global deal, but that should not mean that the EU gives up. By pursuing bilateral deals, particularly with China, and engaging with civil society, Europe can make progress on climate change even in the absence of worldwide agreement. Such innovative approaches might even strengthen the multilateral approach in the longer term.
The EU could be at the East Asia Summit that is beginning in Hanoi, and it could carry a compelling and coherent message that would be listened to be the Asian states, Russia and the US. But it isn’t. This must change.
Many European economies might be struggling, but when it comes to trade it still counts. A new agreement over trade with South Korea has sent a strong signal, ahead of this week’s EU-Korea summit, that Europe is still a serious and important global player.