China-US Relations in a New Global Order

On Monday 9 July, the Fudan Centre hosted a roundtable discussion between scholars of Fudan University and counterparts from Danish research and education institutions. The Fudan delegation included Professor Wu Xinbo, Dean of the Institute of International Studies (IIS) and Director at the Centre for American Studies (CAS) of Fudan University, Professor Song Guoyou, Deputy Director of CAS and Professor Lin Minwang, Assistant Dean of IIS.

The event was opened by the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor Troels Østergaard Sørensen, and moderated by Chunrong Liu of the Fudan Centre. It featured a keynote presentation by Professor Wu Xinbo. In his talk, he defined the major current challenges to China-US trade relations in conjunction with the unfolding trade dispute between China and the US.

According to Professor Wu, China-US relations under the Trump administration have shifted towards a state of mutual competition, which has suppressed the partnership once present. Accordingly, China-US economic relations are no longer viewed as a positive factor, but is increasingly viewed as a centre of contention from a US perspective.

Another challenge to China-US relations regards the role as responsible stakeholder in regional and global issues. In Professor Wu's mind, the Trump administration does not seem interested in the US being a responsible stakeholder in regional and global issues. He predicts that future cooperation between China and the US will take place under 'necessary' rather than 'expanding' conditions.

Lastly, he argued that in the current pattern of interaction between China and the US, the two parts are unable to reach a lasting state of consensus. The unpredictable behavior of the Trump administration has undermined the strategic trust between the two leaders.

To lay the ground for further discussions, Professor Bertel Heurlin of the Department of Political Science gave a presentation on the theoretical issues of major power relations, and shared the European perspectives on China-US relations. The presentations was followed by a vivid roundtable discussion between the participating scholars. The discussions touched upon several issues relating to OBOR, China's EU strategy, and its Arctic interests.