Toward a New Transatlantic China Policy

September 22, 2020, 10:00 - 11:00 am EDT // 16:00 - 17:00 CEST

Views from German Parliamentarians

China increasingly dominates American foreign policy thinking and has moved to the top of the political agenda in Germany and the European Union (EU). There is growing recognition in the United States that policy toward China is a growing transatlantic issue. Recent developments such as the new national security law on Hong Kong, mass detention of ethnic Uyghurs in Xinjiang, and China’s aggressive COVID diplomacy add to significant concerns about Beijing’s economic subsidies and aspirations to dominate high-technology fields. This highlights the need for the U.S. and Europe to strengthen their common efforts on key aspects of China policy.

While the administrations in Berlin, Brussels, and Washington seek new areas of policy coordination, American and German parliamentarians are bringing renewed focus on China to legislative debates that will have significant impact for the U.S., Germany, and the EU. A large and growing number of China-related bills has been introduced in the U.S. Congress in its current session, often with bipartisan support. In the German Bundestag, lawmakers across party lines are increasingly questioning the German government’s China policy and demanding a more critical approach. A number of American and German parliamentarians were also instrumental in creating the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), an international cross-party group of legislators. Together, U.S. and German parliamentarians will be instrumental in transatlantic cooperation on issues ranging from human rights to digital security vis-à-vis China.

AGI is glad to present a discussion on China policy issues with participation from leading German parliamentarians from a diverse array of major political parties.

Reinhard Buetikofer is a German politician who has been a Member of the European Parliament (Greens/EFA) since 2009. He sits on the Committee on Foreign Affairs 9AFET), where he serves as Greens/EFA foreign affairs spokesperson. He also serves as the Chair of the European Parliament Delegation for Relations with China as well as a member of the Delegation to the United States and a substitute member of the ASEAN Delegation.

From 2012 to 2019 he was co-chair of the European Green Party. Before he became a MEP in 2009, Mr. Buetikofer was the Co-chair of the German Green Party from 2002 until 2008. He was the party’s Secretary General from 1998 until 2002. Prior to that he served as the Chair of the Greens in the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg. From 1988 until 1996 he served as a Member of the Baden-Württemberg State Parliament. He began his engagement with the Greens in 1984 when he was elected as a member of Heidelberg’s city council. Bütikofer is a member of the Europe/Transatlantic Advisory Board and the General Assembly of the Heinrich Böll Foundation, the NABU Club, the German-Israeli Society, and the German-Chinese Dialogue Forum, as well as the DGAP and the IISS. He studied philosophy, history and ancient history at Heidelberg University.

Gyde Jensen is a member of the Free Democratic Party in Germany. She has been serving as a member of the Bundestag since 2017. Ms. Jensen studied English, Political Science and International law at the University of Kiel. She worked in Geneva and later in Washington D.C as the communication consultant of Friedrich Naumann Foundation from 2015 to 2017. Ms. Jensen is the youngest female MP in the Bundestag. She has been the Chair of the Committee on Human Rights, and Humanitarian Aid since 2018.

Nils Schmid has been a Member of the German Bundestag for the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) since September 2017. Since 2018, he has been the spokesperson on foreign affairs for the SPD parliamentary group. He is also a member of the Franco-German Parliamentary Assembly. From 1997 to 2017 he was the member of the state parliament of Baden-Württemberg. In 2009, he was elected chairman of the Baden-Württemberg Land branch of the SPD by party members, an office he held until 2016. From 2011 to 2016, he served as Baden-Württemberg’s Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs and as Deputy Minister-President of Baden-Württemberg. Before that, he was the chairman of the SPD local association in Nürtingen from 1999 to 2010. After he joined SPD in 1991, he held several positions in Esslingen and Baden-Württemberg’s Working Group of Young Socialists. He studied law at the University of Tübingen.

This webinar will convene via Zoom. Please contact Ms. Elizabeth Caruth with any questions at