INDIALOGUE is a biennial festival in Ghent and Leuven that focuses on dialogue and exchange with the Indian art world. With this multidisciplinary 4-day festival, organisers Maghenta and India House Leuven aim for a stimulating and innovative exchange between contemporary and (more) traditional performing arts. Besides programming high-quality work, it aims to be a creative hub for less dominant artistic expressions through new collaborations, artistic blends and unexpected encounters.
In the quest to achieve the EU’s ambitious 2050 net-zero carbon emissions target, renewable hydrogen has emerged as a critical element in the green energy transition. Although hydrogen is promising as a clean-burning fuel and energy carrier, its energy-intensive production and high costs pose a challenge for large-scale implementation. China and the EU are key players in the global hydrogen landscape but still primarily rely on fossil-fuel heavy methods of production. As both have released a number of strategic objectives as part of their respective hydrogen strategies, the renewable hydrogen sector is set to change over the next couple of years. The EU’s ambitious targets and China’s strategic goals for the renewable hydrogen sector create an opportunity for collaborative efforts. This EIAS policy brief will explore the chances and challenges for EU-China collaboration in the renewable hydrogen sector, emphasising the fields of fuel-cell technology, electrolyser manufacturing, and renewable energy production and trade.
In 2013 China launched its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which seeks to increase globalisation and connectivity primarily through infrastructure projects. Through these projects, China aims to make economic gains as well as support the host country’s infrastructure, as many of the 150 signatories on the initiative are Least Developed Countries (LDCs), and to close the global infrastructure gap.
German carmakers Volkswagen (VW), BMW and Mercedes-Benz are increasing their presence and Foreign Direct Investments in China, which is showing new investment patterns. The Chinese Electrical Vehicle (EV) expertise and technology, together with the country’s large market, could help the European automotive industry to retain global competitiveness and further its electrification process. In this context, the EU should place the European automotive industry’s interests at the centre of its green transition. Apart from the growing political scepticism and potential competition, economic collaboration with Chinese companies and the need for a broader understanding of the Chinese market as well as related strategies will become increasingly important in the long term.
When Lord Jim O’Neill, a former Goldman Sachs economist, coined the acronym “BRIC” in 2001 to describe the economic potential of Brazil, Russia, India, and China, he hardly foresaw that a formal BRICS political grouping, including South Africa, would emerge. Fast forward to the 2023 BRICS Summit, the group is now expanding. The Johannesburg II declaration, issued on 23 August 2023, offers a formal invitation to the Argentine Republic, the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to become full members of BRICS from 1 January 2024 onwards. The expansion came as a surprise to many and left some wondering where BRICS is heading, as well as what the expansion will mean for other actors such as the EU.
On 13 July 2022, after months of heavy protests, protestors stormed the Sri Lankan presidential palace. In what followed, then president Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled and resigned, being promptly replaced by his prime minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, through a Parliamentary vote. Since the turnover the economic and political situation within Sri Lanka remains delicate. As the island has increasingly become a centre of Sino-Indian rivalries, how can the EU assist its economic and political development and help address the crisis, in order to stabilise the country and avoid it becoming a flashpoint of competing interests.
As the world recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic and the global order is shifting, new opportunities are arising for cooperation and enhanced coordination on international infrastructure development. This EIAS Briefing Paper examines the potential and risks for collaboration between China and Europe on their respective connectivity initiatives, and assesses potential challenges, pitfalls, as well as pathways to accomplish this. This is done by (1) illustrating the potential and risks of China’s Belt and Road Initiative; (2) explaining the impacts and changes that have emerged since the pandemic; (3) examining the other actors’ connectivity and infrastructure initiatives, including the EU’s Global Gateway; (4) listing the modes for cooperation; and (5) recommending channels through which to overcome challenges associated with coordination on infrastructure initiatives.
On 13 July 2023 Germany released its first-ever China Strategy, of which its inception has been driven by the new geopolitical equilibrium between Berlin and Beijing. China, Germany’s largest trading partner, has become a more assertive actor at the global stage and “as a result of this, we need to change our approach” Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock declared at the presentation of the long-awaited paper.