Policy Briefs

C. Bastasin: Europe should not encourage the “China vs the US” bipolarity

Deglobalization does not forcedly mean less multilateralism. This is how Europe should think about the likely coming bipolar world, built on the growing competition between the U.S. and China. Like other countries in a bipolar world, Europe would be hard-pressed to take sides between the two geopolitical behemoths. Much speaks in favor of a tighter transatlantic relationship, but this is easier said than done. The degree of Europe’s dependency on global trade is such that a hard-nosed decoupling from Asia would be immensely costly, possibly eroding democratic consensus among European citizens, and would still require many years. Europe has the cultural inclination and economic interest to represent a force for multilateralism between the U.S. and China.

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