European Union and Chinese flags are pictured during a EU-China summit in Brussels, Belgium.
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China's subnational diplomacy in Europe and Germany

Establishing contacts with local and regional governments in Europe is an important tool in China’s diplomatic toolbox. In recent years, China has steadily expanded its ties at this subnational level. Regions and cities in Europe have benefited from Beijing’s increased interest and activities, leading to increased Chinese investment, research and development (R&D) cooperation, new business opportunities and boosting of political and cultural exchanges.

However, with Xi Jinping at the helm, China’s approach to subnational diplomacy has shifted. Today, Beijing uses the subnational level to increase its influence and advance its strategic economic and political interests, writes MERICS Senior Analyst Roderick Kefferpütz in his new reports on Chinese subnational activities in Europe and Germany:

  • Read the report “Big Fish in Small Ponds: China’s subnational diplomacy in Europe” online here.
  • Read the second report on "China's subnational diplomacy in Germany" online here (available only in German.