Balancing Act: Major Powers and the Global Response to US-China Great Power Competition

Balancing Act: Major Powers and the Global Response to US-China Great Power Competition

The world’s major powers are currently engaged in a careful balancing act when it comes to navigating the complex and ever-changing competition between the United States and China.

The United States and China are now the world’s clear number one and number two in economic scale, energy consumption, carbon emissions, military spending, and technology. For most metrics indicative of relative
international power, there is a substantial and growing gap between the top two powers (the U.S. and China) and the rest (with the exception of gross domestic product, if you consider the combined GDP of the European
Union member states).

Brookings’ report below is a discussion focusing on the actors that have agency in this dynamic, and how each is approaching the escalation of U.S.-China rivalry.

The countries discussed in this interview all have deep ties with both the United States and China. They are faced with increasingly difficult decisions regarding their current and future relations with both great powers. How are these countries attempting to cope, survive, and shape the rivalry, and to what extent are there commonalities or divergences of strategy across these issues?

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