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EU-China Security Relations: Discourse vs Practice and the Role of EU Member States


The gap between discourse and practice which has so far prevented the EU and China from implementing the ambitious security agenda developed within the framework of their strategic partnership is caused by two main sets of impeding factors: practical, stemming from existing policies, and normative, deriving from fundamental divergences regarding the nature of an actor’s role in the international arena. Moreover, obstacles to EU-China security cooperation also stem from and are magnified at the EU member states level. Key member states lack normative and practical synergy in their understanding of security policy and the role the EU and China play in it, thus severely complicating any attempt at bridging the discourse/practice gap.
Keywords: European Union, China, security, cooperation, EU member states