Although Europeans succumbed to US pressure and at the NATO summit agreed to acknowledge the Chinese challenges to the alliance, it will not substantially affect Chinese economic projects in Europe. However, China and Russia, two countries once regarded as enemies by NATO, may cooperate to meet the challenges of all parties.
For the first time in history, the 2019 meeting of NATO leaders in London discussed the rise of China. However, the rise of China will not make China an enemy of NATO. Just as PRC Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hua Chunying said, China’s growing influence does not mean that it has become a threat or a new enemy for NATO. Although there may be a competitive relationship between the two in specific areas, there is also the possibility of cooperation. The agreement between the European countries and the United States on the threat posed by China's rise is due to a compromise within NATO to seek legitimacy for the alliance.
On the one hand, China's financial investment in Europe is purely driven by economic and technical cooperation, without any political conditions attached. As two of the largest economies in the world, China and the EU cannot only complement each other’s advantages and enable their economies to develop more efficiently, cooperation can also benefit the world economy and facilitate its smooth operation. But China will not and has no intention to interfere in the domestic affairs of Europe. China is building an overseas Chinese market to get another 1 billion people into the middle class, but there is no gene of aggression in Chinese culture. If a core technology independently developed and mastered by China can only stay in China and not be used for the benefit of the world, the country is really irresponsible.
Second, however, this does not mean that European countries will always be in step with the United States. With the disappearance of the traditional enemy, the Soviet Union, and the need of Europe to pursue its own collective defence, the contradictions between the two sides are becoming increasingly prominent. In dealing with the issue of China’s rise, European countries will compromise the Cold War mentality by taking a more pragmatic attitude. They will pay more attention to the opportunities offered by China’s rise, and promote economic development through cooperation with China.
Finally, generally speaking, although Europeans succumbed to US pressure and at the NATO summit agreed to acknowledge the Chinese challenges (not threat, opportunities as well) to the alliance, it will not substantially affect Chinese economic projects in Europe. However, China and Russia, two countries once regarded as enemies by NATO, may cooperate to meet the challenges of all parties. But if the United States and European states can put aside their prejudices, China, Europe, the US and Russia can achieve win-win cooperation in adressing the common problems facing mankind.