June 12, 2019

If Trump Wants to Take On China, He Needs Allies

And he should start with Europe.

By Julianne Smith

With the prospect of a trade deal between China and the United States all but dead, the Trump administration is no doubt weighing its next steps in its quest to rein in Beijing’s rise. President Trump should try something he hasn’t yet: call Europe.

Just five years ago, such a suggestion would have raised eyebrows. Europe’s relationship with China has traditionally been one of close economic cooperation, especially for an export-led country like Germany. To the extent that Europeans saw political and security challenges in working with China, they kept faith that growing economic ties with the West would temper the country’s worst instincts.

Over the last few years, though, Germany, along with several other European countries, have experienced a strategic awakening. German policymakers, along with industry leaders, have become much more vocal about China’s predatory trade practices, in particular forced technology transfers. They have begun to refer to China as a “systemic competitor.” So has the European Union.

Read the full article in The New York Times.

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