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China and France, ergo Macron and Xi Jinping because they esteem each other so highly?

If Macron wants a France and a Europe that are not "vassals" of the United States, as he himself has repeatedly publicly declared, he must maintain strong relations with China. And this today represents the only geopolitical choice in the logic of the French President. But this is a serious strategic mistake because Xi Jinping is very good at exploiting differences in European views in order to exercise his hegemony according to the rule of "divide et impera." France is important for China: it is a large Western country and one of the leaders of the European Union. By consolidating Sino-French relations, most issues in Europe will be resolved pro-China, under pressure from French President. In Macron's (ir)"rationality", France and China are more complementary than competitive from an economic point of view and strategically there is room for positive mutual support. That is why the mutual needs of Paris and Beijing are constantly increasing. And for the French President, further promoting Sino-French relations is in the common interest of both countries.


This is Paris's only geopolitical choice in the logic of the French President.

When the relationship between the West and China becomes more troubled, the strong bond between France and China, that is, between Macron and Xi Jinping, becomes more evident and is promoted with "in pompa magna" to the entire globe.


Photo official twitter profile Emmauel Macron

Why does this happen?


This year marks the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and France. France was the first major Western country to establish diplomatic relations with China at the ambassadorial level in 1964. Since then, the transalpine country has always been at the forefront of Western countries in relations with China.


In April 2023, Macron's visit to China received a high-profile reception. At the end of the visit, Macron wrote on Twitter in French, Chinese and English: "We have a lot to do together. Long live the France-China friendship."

France attaches great importance to its relations with Beijing for many key strategic reasons. First of all, since the United States has soured relations with China, relations between Xi Jinping and Macron have intensified.


“Gaulleism” is integrated into the bones and mind of Macron, and the central content of Gaullism is “strategic autonomy”.

France has always considered itself a great country and is very proud of it politically and culturally. Even though France's GDP is now seventh in the world, it is a permanent member of the UN Security Council, it is a nuclear power and finally it is one of the member states and leaders of the EU.


Macron is the EU leader who most emphasizes Europe's "strategic autonomy". Not long ago, he shouted that “Europe will never be a vassal of the United States”.

He also stressed that Europe should become the "third pole" between China and the United States, saying that the so-called "tensions" faced by the United States in the Asia-Pacific region are not a crisis for Europeans who need to build their own security system.


France has also proposed its own “Indo-Pacific strategy”, but its “Indo-Pacific strategy” is different from that of the United States. In particular, he considers China a partner for cooperation in the region.

Strategic autonomy includes both political and security aspects and economic aspects. Politics and security involve the United States and Russia; strategic economic independence targets both the United States and China.


However, the relationship between France and the United States is one of control and counter-control, collection and counter-collection; the relationship with China is mainly a question of interests and competition;


In the past, France has used the “Russian card” to deal with the United States. After the outbreak of the Russo-Ukrainian War, France and Russia were at odds and needed to use China's power to balance Moscow's pressure and ambitions.


Therefore, if Macron wants a France and a Europe that are not "vassals" of the United States, as he himself has repeatedly publicly declared, he must maintain strong relations with China. And this today represents the only geopolitical choice in the logic of the French President. But this is a serious strategic mistake because Xi Jinping is very good at exploiting differences in European views in order to exercise his hegemony according to the rule of "divide aet impera"

If you look closely at Sino-French economic relations, they may seem rather complex, but the logical framework is relatively simple.


The economic friction between the two countries is fundamentally a matter of economic repression. At the urging of von der Leyen, the European Union announced a "de-risking" of China, to which Beijing strongly opposed.


The original meaning includes economic, diplomatic and geopolitical areas. Subsequently, Macron initiated a review to limit "de-risking" to economic security. Then,it was further limited to four specific areas, such as semiconductors and artificial intelligence, and confined to disputes between the parties.


Late last year, the EU launched an anti-subsidy investigation into Chinese electric vehicles because European electric vehicles could not compete with China's high-quality, low-cost vehicles. In January this year, China also launched an investigation into brandy imports from the EU.


Overall, Sino-French cooperation is the absolutely dominant aspect of economic relations between the two countries. China's first nuclear power plant, the Daya Bay Nuclear Power Plant, is a Sino-French joint venture. For Airbus, China is one of the largest buyers in the world. After the tensions between China and the United States and the Boeing accident, Airbus has increased its expectations on the Chinese market. There are currently around 2,100 French companies investing in China. In the first three quarters of last year, French investment in China led all foreign investment, with an increase of 121.7%. Furthermore, Chinese investment in France has increased in recent years, and Macron now fervently hopes that Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers will open factories in France.

France is important for China: it is a large Western country and one of the leaders of the European Union. By consolidating Sino-French relations, most issues in Europe will be resolved pro-China, under pressure from Macron.


In Macron's (ir)"rationality", France and China are more complementary than competitive from an economic point of view and strategically there is room for positive mutual support. That is why the mutual needs of Paris and Beijing are constantly increasing. And for the French President, further promoting Sino-French relations is in the common interest of both countries.





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