In this new report authored by Dr Una Aleksandra Bērziņa-Čerenkova, Head of the China Studies Centre at Riga and Head of the Asia Programme at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs, analyses China’s strategies under the leadership of Xi Jinping and how they pose a challenge to Western liberal democracies, as well as how they should be approached.
The main approach of Xi Jinping is to gain support both domestically and internationally by emphasizing nationalism within China, and gain attractiveness abroad to the Chinese diaspora. The aim is to elevate itself as a global competitor to western liberalism and highlight the Chinese model as responsive and effective in delivering economic growth, and being capable of selecting competent leaders. Here lies the challenges to Western democracies, where the Chinese model claims to deliver tangible results, instead of being democratic.
The policy recommendations are:
- All western nations should adopt a national-level-coordinated China policy. Good practices to balance and inform stakeholders include ‘China champion’/’facilitator’ positions.
- Workshops should take place in Western democracies on national and supernational levels of policies along the spectrum of informing/regulating various communities. Good practices include a contact point for knowledge security.
- National China knowledge networks must be supported and fostered.
Una Aleksandra Bērziņa- Čerenkova is Head of the China Studies Centre at Riga Stradins University, Head of the Asia Programme at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs, a member of CHOICE and European Think-tank Network on China. She is the author of Perfect Imbalance: China and Russia (World Scientific, 2022, and the editor of Discourse, Rhetoric and Shifting Political Behaviour in China (Routledge, 2023).