Martin Wolf wrote an article titled “The challenge of one world, two systems” in the Financial Times. As the chief economics commentator of the magazine, Wolf said the unbridled strategic competition between China and the West would be a disaster.
The relationship between China and the US is one of the most significant current events. And many wonder how this could be managed.
In terms of how the US and its allies should view China, Wolf pointed out that the across-the-board hostility towards China might be far more disruptive than the Cold War, following which, co-operation would collapse and no country would be an island.
Instead, Wolf suggested the right and mature path is to manage relations that will be both competitive and cooperative, to recognize that China can be both a foe and friend.
“It is clear that the West’s recent failures are overwhelmingly self-inflicted: they should not be blamed on others, however attractive that option might be,” Wolf wrote.
In Wolf’s opinion, the US should view its situation with far greater equanimity than can China, provided it retains its network of alliances, especially given its geographical location and economic strengths. Thus, its interdependence with China could be a stabilizing force, since it strengthens both sides’ interests in peaceful relationships.
Wolf describes cooperation as essential as interdependence, that the global environment’s prosperity and peace could not be managed without cooperation with China. “Moreover, if every country were forced to choose one side or the other, there would again be deep and costly divisions among and within countries,” Wolf added.
The developing China in Wolf’s eyes is an emerging great power, one that never was part of a Western-dominated system. In response, many are trying to shift the world into an era of unbridled strategic competition. “However, history suggests this is dangerous. What is needed instead is a combination of competition and cooperation with a rising China. The alternative would be deepening hostility and rising disorder. Nobody sensible enough should want that. So stop, before it is too late,” Wolf warned at the end.
(Compiled by Qiao Wai)