World order

Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) welcomes German Chancelor Olaf Scholz at the Grand Hall in Beijing, China, on 4 November 2022. (Kay Nietfeld/Pool/AFP)

Scholz's Asia month: Preparing Germany for a non-Western-centric world

Thorsten Benner of the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) in Berlin points out that unlike former Chancellor Merkel, current German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has invested a lot of time into building closer connections with Asian partners. This fits in with his worldview of multiple emerging global powers, and the need to foster resilience, diversification and “de-risking” in achieving economic security vis-a-vis China.
US President Joe Biden gestures to the media as he walks towards Marine One for departure to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, US, 7 August 2022. (Ken Cedeno/Reuters)

The US's new National Security Strategy: An action plan to defeat China

The US’s recent release of its new National Security Strategy (NSS) represents its vow to outcompete its rivals, especially China, on the international stage. Political commentator Jin Jian Guo says that the ideological tussle between China and the US is becoming a new Cold War and for the NSS to be released during the period of China’s 20th Party Congress, the starter’s pistol has been fired in a strategic competition where there can only be one winner.
A police officer guards the Registan square in downtown Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on 13 September 2022. (Alexander Nemenov/AFP)

Xi Jinping embarks on Central Asia visit amid a changed world

After more than two years since the start of the pandemic, Chinese President Xi Jinping will resume making diplomatic visits overseas with his Central Asia tour this month. The geopolitical situation has vastly transformed during his physical absence in the international arena. Zaobao correspondent Yang Danxu explores the implications of these changes.
Men twirl dragon streamers on the Bund promenade along the Huangpu River during sunrise in Shanghai, China, on 7 September 2022. (Hector Retamal/AFP)

[State of our world] China’s future in a politicised world

As the world rapidly shifts from an economic one to a highly political one, competition will no longer be about who wins more but about who loses less. In the shift from a win-win to a zero-sum game, China is torn as it strives to get closer to the developed world yet seeks to maintain a distance from the third world and Russia. In navigating these troubled waters, three critical developments — relations with Russia, Taiwan, and decoupling from the West — may alter the fate of China. This is the last in a series of four articles contemplating a changing world order.
People pass by portraits of Chinese President Xi Jinping and late Chinese chairman Mao Zedong, in Shanghai, China, 31 August 2022. (Aly Song/Reuters)

[State of our world] From Three Worlds to Four: Mao’s revised theory of an emerging global order?

Russian academic Artyom Lukin revisits Mao’s Three Worlds Theory to explain that while the world looks to be on the cusp of great change, the paradigms of the past can still inform the future. Much will depend on the “fourth world” of Russia and other perceived US adversaries who are drawing closer to China. This is the third in a series of four articles contemplating a changing world order.
A vintage doll is pictured near a damaged kindergarten following recent Russian shelling in the city of Slovyansk, Ukraine, as Russia's attack in Ukraine continues, on 2 September 2022 (Ammar Awad/Reuters)

In the China-US-Russia confrontation, it is military power that counts in the end

The Russia-Ukraine war has turned into a stage for the US and Russian militaries to flex their muscles, and so too in the case of the Taiwan Strait for the People’s Liberation Army and the US military. Against this backdrop, says political commentator Jin Jian Guo, the arms race in East Asia is quickening its pace, with Japan seeking to revise its constitution, Taiwan aiming to raise military spending next year, and North Korea holding firm to its nuclear programme. How will these developments affect geopolitics and security in the region?
A Russian soldiers stands with a national flag at the Red Square during the Spasskaya Tower International Military Music Festival at the Red Square in Moscow, Russia, on 26 August 2022. (Alexander Nemenov/AFP)

Will China and Russia join hands to push for an alternative world order?

Out of the ashes of a changing global order could rise a growing China-Russia alliance, says East Asian Institute senior researcher Lance Gore. Such a prospect is made possible by the common ground they share, including having a victim complex, harbouring resentment towards the West and aspiring to regain their past grandeur. However, the two civilisations are very different and there could still be a misalignment of objectives. In light of the obstacles, will their relationship stay a strategic partnership that goes no further?
People ride on scooters across a street during morning rush hour, in Beijing, China, 2 August 2022. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

[State of our world] The world will be very different from the one we're used to

In a changed world post-pandemic and against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, Asia will face pressure from competing minilateral coalitions amid the breakdown of multilateralism and the weakening global and regional institutions. This time, it may not be so easy not to take sides, says Professor C. Raja Mohan. This is the second in a series of four articles contemplating a changing world order.
A demonstrator wearing a face mask in the colours of the Ukraine flag attends a protest rally against the war in Ukraine at the German Chancellery in Berlin on 4 May 2022. (Tobias Schwarz/AFP)

Russia-Ukraine war: A turning point in Germany’s policy towards China

Economics professor Zhu Ying notes that even though Germany is economically dependent on China, its stand is changing due to the war in Ukraine, with China being seen as supportive of Russia’s invasion that goes against shared universal values. All in all, Germany’s increasing focus on values rather than economic interests is having a spillover effect on China.