China aims to challenge western dominance by positioning itself as leader for developing countries

China is actively positioning itself as a leader for developing countries, aiming to challenge Western dominance in global governance. Li Xi, the head of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, recently gave a speech in which he referenced China’s historical struggles for national independence and liberation, which served as a highlight of this effort. Li’s speech in Havana, Cuba, was filled with nods to China’s past, mentioning the “Bandung Spirit” and “Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence” that emerged from the 1955 Bandung Conference. This conference saw China commit to a path of non-aggression and non-interference in the affairs of other Asian and African countries.

China’s campaign to present itself as a developing world leader goes beyond Li Xi’s speech. The country has published a proposal calling for sweeping changes to international rules and institutions that oversee global development, security, and human rights. The proposal argues for developing countries to have a much greater say at the United Nations, including advocating for seats for Africa on an expanded Security Council. China argues that historical injustices should be redressed by granting developing countries more representation and influence.

China’s foreign policies, including initiatives like the Belt and Road Initiative, the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative, and the Global Civilization Initiative, are presented as a unified plan for addressing various global challenges. Chinese officials argue that these policies provide a better future for humanity, covering issues such as climate change and cyberspace regulation.

Chinese leaders view themselves as the leaders of a new non-aligned movement, challenging the dominance of Western countries in global governance. They call for “true multilateralism” that is no longer dominated by America and other rich liberal democracies. China cites the diversity of the world’s civilizations as a reason to reject Western-centric liberal values.

However, some countries may be cautious about fully aligning with China’s vision. They may prefer diversifying their strategic, economic, and political interests rather than joining a China-led bloc. It remains to be seen how other countries will respond to China’s efforts to present itself as a leader for the developing world.

Overall, China’s campaign to become a natural leader for developing countries represents a significant shift in its foreign policy. By referencing its historical struggles and proposing sweeping changes to global governance, China aims to challenge the dominance of Western countries and rally non-Western countries around its vision for a new world order.

Source: The Economist