As Europe struggles to deal with free movement of people, and federal rule of law – the two biggest UK concerns – we can consider that neither Asia, nor NAFTA, would develop a continental unity that included either of these concepts. It does not mean they are wrong but, perhaps, a little ahead of their time. Perhaps they need some reform to address populism and the UK’s problems.
Globalisation will increase as time goes on – the brands and innovation dictate – and free movement of labour will increase, and the laws will homogenise. But for now both issues need some attention.
The USA and China will hopefully settle a trade path but other major issues are still there to be addressed. The USA has misread the Chinese path but China has to deal with the USA as it is. Rocky seas still ahead and for America’s allies a time when pushing and pulling will continue.
At this crossroads of history can the UK and Europe afford a tough approach to China and Russia? Probably not. Over 30pc of the world’s growth comes from China. Russia is a central part of the Eurasian land mass and source of global energy. Both nations are military powers.
So Europe is likely to be considering how Russia might link with, or join, Europe. It is a hard one to see right now in the fog of rhetoric, but who forecast the unification of Germany. The reality is that Russia would benefit from being within Europe, and Europe would benefit from Russia being part of European mechanisms. A move like that might ease competitive forces and move the focus on to complementary strategies for development from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
So we in the UK do not want to see us being pushed away from China when we need unity with Europe and the growth of China and BRI. The industrialisation of Eurasia is a great boon to us and Europe. We need to be part of it for economic benefit and for our own security.
Managing the pressure from the West is not easy but these two stories tell us why we need to think
The UK dialogue is long delayed. And this is Liu He visiting Germany. The Germans have stolen a start on us. Or we have given up our lead and London is vulnerable.
a polite warning.
Lets keep our eyes on the ball. The basis for working on this positively with China is President Xi’s economic and political philosophy – The Community of Shared Future. The UK can move from laggard to ahead of the game.
Brexit is a huge diversion and negative decisions are easier for us when distracted. But the world is moving.