Lula’s victory over Jair Bolsonaro brings back a president with a pro-Beijing record, but the geopolitical context has changed since the early 2000s. Rather than repeat the past, Lula will try to attempt to balance relations with the US and China while pursuing greater regional integration.
The appetite for alternatives to the Belt and Road Initiative is motivated by a perception that it is somehow succeeding. But this assumption has not been properly scrutinised. If China is winning the narrative battle, then the EU and US must find the right story, not shout the same message louder.
Rather than political leverage, this reputational gain is the main prize of Chinese vaccine diplomacy and supports Beijing’s aspirations to global leadership
When it comes to the driving forces behind purchase agreements with China, the picture that emerges is one of adequate solutions meeting extreme demand. China, and now Russia, are winning purchase agreements simply by being able to deliver.
Just as Central Asia’s dependence on China is an unfortunate reality, so is the participation of Huawei in Britain’s 5G network. Washington’s failure to acknowledge basic realities was on show during the US secretary of state’s recent tour.