How to Respond to China’s Carrots and Sticks?

Monday, December 7, 2020, 10:00 - 11:00 am EST // 16:00 - 17:00 CET

Prospects of a Transatlantic Response to Chinese Economic Coercion

China is increasingly resorting to economic coercion in order to advance political objectives. In the Asia-Pacific regional context, Beijing has repeatedly leveraged economic interdependence to subject regional states to its political and security interests. In Europe, on the other hand, China has thus far relied on subliminal measures to compel individual actors to its will. But as China’s global ambitions and stakes in Europe rise, heavy-handed coercion of the kind that South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, or the Philippines have experienced could soon become a reality in Europe. A case in point are Beijing’s threats to reduce German car sales in China should Huawei be excluded from the German 5G market. In consequence, European policy makers have come to appreciate that China’s rise implicates European security, and that economics and politics cannot be separated in diplomatic relations with China.

This webinar will provide an overview of Chinese economic coercion in the past and look at Beijing’s strategic considerations behind them. Based on these considerations, recommendations for a transatlantic response to Chinese economic coercion will be explored.

Maximilian Ernst is DAAD/AGI Research Fellow in fall 2020. He is a researcher and PhD Candidate in Political Science at the Institute for European Studies of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), where he is also affiliated with the KF-VUB Korea Chair. His PhD research seeks to explain Chinese Coercive Diplomacy targeting secondary states in the Asia-Pacific region, specifically how Beijing reconciles the strategic costs of alienating the target states of coercion. Prior to his doctoral studies, Mr. Ernst worked as a Consultant for the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency in Hamburg. He holds an MA in International Security and Foreign Policy from Yonsei University in Seoul and a BA in Chinese Studies from the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz.

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