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Letzte Aktualisierung: April 26, 2022

Stefan Sack: 'Change through trade' was a successful strategy for China

Stefan Sack, former Vice President of the European Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai.
For years, economic cooperation with China was motivated by the idea of "change through trade". The noble hope behind it: The People's Republic would open up by integrating deeper into the international community and increasingly adapt democratic elements in its political system. The former Vice President of the European Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, Stefan Sack, draws a sobering conclusion. "Change through trade" has worked out, he says, but not at all in the way Germany and Europe had hoped. Instead, we are the ones who have adapted our behavior to Chinese preferences due to the "dependencies of our supply chains and the greed for new growth markets.
Whenever German chancellors traveled to China, they always carried the wishful thinking of change through trade in their luggage. The logic behind it: Through intensified business relations between China and the West, the People's Republic would gradually become more liberal, perhaps even democratic someday.
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