Join us for a panel discussion regarding how the countries of the West can develop a balanced relationship with China. Relations with China are deeply troubled as governments in the UK, USA and Europe struggle with how to respond to a more assertive China. Not only are economic relations troubled, but Western concerns voiced regarding human rights in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong make it problematic for governments to engage with China and satisfy their electorates that they are confronting human rights challenges.
It has been assumed by many that China and the USA are now in a great power competition but as Henry Kissinger wrote in his book On China, “The argument that China and the United States are condemned to collision assumes that they deal with each other as competing blocs across the Pacific. But this idea is the road to disaster for both sides.” With the new administration of President Biden there is a possibility of a different tone in comments regarding China, but the content of policy is not yet clear. What approach should the USA, UK and the EU take and can they develop a balanced approach to China?
We will be joined by Professor Kerry Brown, Director of the Lau China Institute at King’s College, former Professor of Chinese Politics and Director of the China Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, and former Fellow as well as Head of the Asia Program at Chatham House. From 1998 to 2005, he worked at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, as First Secretary at the British Embassy in Beijing, and then as Head of the Indonesia, Philippine and East Timor Section. From 1994 to 1996, he lived in the Inner Mongolia region of China. He is the author of over ten books on modern Chinese politics, history and language, including: The New Emperors: Power and the Princelings in China (2014); What’s Wrong with Diplomacy: The Case of the UK and China (2015); Berkshire Dictionary of Chinese Biography (in Four Volumes, 2014-2015); China’s CEO: Xi Jinping (2016); China’s World: What Does China Want (2017).
Kerry is joined by George Magnus, an independent economist and commentator, and Research Associate at the China Centre, Oxford University, and at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London. George was the Chief Economist, and then Senior Economic Adviser at UBS Investment Bank from 1995-2012. Whilst at UBS, he served for four years as the Chair of the Investment Committee of the pension and life assurance fund. For four years until 2016, he served finally as an external senior adviser with clients of the investment bank. He had previously worked as the Chief Economist at SG Warburg (1987-1995), and before that in a senior capacity before ‘Big Bang’ at Laurie Milbank/Chase Securities, and before that, Bank of America in London and San Francisco. George is the author of Red Flags: why Xi’s China is in Jeopardy, and The Age of Aging (2008), which investigated the effects of the unique experience of demographic change on the global economy; and Uprising: will emerging markets shape or shake the world economy?
Also joining the panel is Matthew Rous, Chief Executive of the China Britain Business Council, since September 2017, spent 26 years in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office working as a career diplomat, most recently as British Consul-General in Guangzhou. Matthew read Modern and Medieval Languages at Churchill College, Cambridge, subsequently studied Mandarin Chinese at SOAS, and is a graduate of the Major Projects Leadership Academy at the Oxford University, Saïd Business School.