‘Small' groups don't rule the world

The re-emergence of China as a leading global power is considered to be one of the most significant geopolitical events of recent times.

15 June 2021 | Economics

CARBIS BAY, England - China has pointedly cautioned Group of Seven leaders that the days when "small" groups of countries decided the fate of the world was long gone, hitting back at the world's richest democracies which have sought a unified position over Beijing.

"The days when global decisions were dictated by a small group of countries are long gone," a spokesman for the Chinese embassy in London said on Sunday.

"We always believe that countries, big or small, strong or weak, poor or rich, are equals, and that world affairs should be handled through consultation by all countries."

The re-emergence of China as a leading global power is considered to be one of the most significant geopolitical events of recent times, alongside the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union that ended the Cold War.

The G7, whose leaders were meeting in southwestern England, has been searching for a coherent response to the growing assertiveness of president Xi Jinping after China’s spectacular economic and military rise over the past 40 years.

ALTERNATIVE

Leaders of the group - the United States, Canada, Britain, Germany, Italy, France and Japan - wanted to use their gathering in the English seaside resort of Carbis Bay to show the world that the richest democracies can offer an alternative to China’s growing clout.

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau led a Group of Seven discussion of China on Saturday and called on leaders to come up with a unified approach to the challenges posed by the People's Republic, a source said.

The G7 are planning to offer developing nations an infrastructure scheme that could rival Xi's multi-trillion-dollar Belt and Road initiative.

‘NO WAR’

Beijing has repeatedly hit back against what it perceives as attempts by Western powers to contain China, and says many major powers are still gripped by an outdated imperial mindset after years of humiliating China.

British prime minister Boris Johnson said yesterday the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 European and North American countries, did not want a new Cold War with China.

"When it comes to China, I don't think anybody around the table wants to descend into a new Cold War with China," he said on arrival at the NATO summit in Brussels.

"But I think people see challenges, they see things that we have to manage together, but they also see opportunities." – Nampa/Reuters

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