Policy Paper 03 April 2018

Europe’s Response to the Belt and Road Initiative

by Garima Mohan               The German Marshall Fund of the United States

Europe’s initial enthusiasm about the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is tempering. BRI is undermining the EU’s internal cohesion, has the potential to impact European security, and is creating stiff competition for European companies on trade, investments, and market access in Europe and Asia. European policymakers are also beginning to realize the impact of BRI beyond the European continent — notably on the power balance and stability in Asia. Asian markets are important export destinations for Europe, and a majority of its sea-borne trade transits through the Indo-Pacific.

Europe, therefore, has a clear interest in maintaining a rules-based order and unhindered trade flows in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Even though Europe is still grappling with the new “Indo-Pacific” framing, its interests converge with the Quad countries. Member states like France and Britain have already begun to reassess their security role in the Indo-Pacific. And the EU wants to partner with key players in Asia on shaping the rules around connectivity, and provide a comprehensive response to the BRI challenge.


This policy paper was originally published by the German Marshall Fund of the United States on March 30, 2018, and is available for download.

Podcast 31 August 2018

Mapping Possible Futures

by Joel Sandhu, Johannes Gabriel, Sonya Sugrobova
The Global Futures Podcast

Podcast 13 August 2018

The Migration and Refugee Challenge in the European Union

by Julian Lehmann, Joel Sandhu, Sonya Sugrobova
The Global Futures Podcast

Podcast 27 July 2018

The Politics and Financing of Water

by Joel Sandhu, Sonya Sugrobova, Julia Reischle
The Global Futures Podcast

Podcast 16 July 2018

A New Era of Geopolitical Competition

by Thorsten Benner, Melissa Li
The Global Futures Podcast

Commentary 09 July 2018

A New Pact with Delhi

by Garima Mohan
Berlin Policy Journal