China

Is Sri Lanka caught in China’s ‘debt trap’? A view from the ground

Last week I had the opportunity to visit Sri Lanka thanks to an invitation from the Bandarainaike Centre for International Studies, based in Colombo, and the Chinese Embassy in Sri Lanka. It was obviously an exercise in public diplomacy by the Chinese Government. The official aim of the exercise [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Ending Zero-Zero under China’s shadow

The signing of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) by the US and the Soviet Union in 1987 marked the beginning of a new era and the end of the Cold War. It was the means whereby Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev renounced (zero on each side) an entire [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Half the world is middle class

The middle and wealthy classes now account for more than half the world’s population, rather more than 3.8 billion people, a majority. This is the conclusion of a World Data Lab report covering 97% of the world’s population and published on the Brookings Institution blog. This is a clear [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Trump against the future of China

It is not only a question of trade deficits or repatriating companies and jobs to the US. The main and most strategic reason for the war being waged by the Trump Administration on Beijing is not trade but halting, or at least containing, China in its race for technological [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Russia 2018: a geopolitical World Cup

The FIFA World Cup in Russia, the sporting event with the largest TV audience, is helping to overcome the Putin regime’s international isolation, at least in the West. This is what the President was hoping for, with the second large-scale global event of this kind in Russia in the [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega EU: external centrifugal forces and European ‘clusters’

The EU’s problems stem not only from within but also from without. What the governments of non-member countries do has an impact on the range of ‘clusters’ into which the Union is fracturing, divisions that are already more complex than North-South, East-West or lenders-borrowers. It is not the cause, [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Trade wars and conflict of perceptions

When China joined the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 2001, it was still a developing country. More than 15 years later, its circumstances have changed and it has turned into the world’s second-largest economy. The WTO has served not to discipline China, which is what Trump (and to some [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Digital sovereignty

The debate about sovereignty has entered the digital realm. At root, sovereignty involves control of one’s own destiny. The Chinese Premier Xi Jinping refers to it when he talks of his goal, announced as long ago as 2015, of turning China into a “cyber superpower”, a “national power in [...]

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