Pepe Escobar emphasises that China – and, more specifically, the Communist Party of China (CPC) – is primarily interested in trade and development rather than military confrontation.
The party was founded in 1921 and has maintained its hold on power since the establishment of the country. The party’s ideology is rooted in Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, and Deng Xiaoping Theory, although its policies have evolved over time, particularly from the 1980s.
The CPC’s primary objective is to establish a “socialist” society in China and advance the interests of the working class. It aims to achieve this through a combination of centralised political control, a market economy, and social policies. The party exercises authority over many aspects of Chinese society, including the government, military, media, and judiciary.
He points out that China has been focusing on its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a development model centred on increased connectivity, especially for the Global South. The initiative aims to bolster trade routes and foster economic collaboration, contrasting sharply with approaches based on military intervention and economic exploitation.
China is already the world’s leading economy by Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) and is expected to become a top technological power by 2025. Pepe argues that China’s economic strategies are far-sighted and designed to integrate with global supply chains. He suggests that sanctions and trade wars are unlikely to slow down China’s technological advancements, which are part of the country’s long-term economic vision encapsulated in its Made in China 2025 plan.
Pepe criticises the West’s inability to understand China’s Confucianist mindset and its history as a civilisation-state. He argues that this lack of understanding leads to a misinterpretation of China’s economic and trade policies. The CPC is not interested in exporting its political ideology but is focused on creating a ‘community with a shared future for mankind’, which is the official mantra capturing its approach to both internal and foreign trade and development.
As Pepe notes, China is deeply committed to economic growth and global trade.
The concept of “peaceful modernisation” emerged in the late 1990s as China experienced rapid economic growth and sought to address concerns about its rise on the global stage.
It was introduced as a response to alleviate fears of a hegemonic or confrontational China that could pose a threat to the existing international order.
In short, it means:
- a multipolar world (which means no more American dominance);
- a stronger web of economic trade and technology independence; and
- the rise of BRICS (and additional) countries.
China emphasises peaceful relations with other countries based on mutual respect, non-interference, and win-win cooperation.
It advocates for multilateralism, supports global governance reforms, and actively participates in international organisations and initiatives.
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