GIGA Focus International Edition English ,

The Recalibration of the World and German Foreign Policy

GIGA Focus | International Edition English | Number 05 |

How should Germany position itself in a recalibrated world where China and India are becoming increasingly stronger actors? Since 2014, the People’s Republic of China has been practising a more assertive global financial diplomacy than before. Was does that mean for the strategic focus of German foreign policy between the poles of transatlantic commitments and the ever more assertive new powers?


  • On the international stage, an ever growing attractive power emanates from China. The establishment of the New Development Bank (NDB) of the BRICS countries and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the internationalisation of the renminbi, and the increasing importance of the BRICS group in the G20 and in global debates are some visible recent examples of the large-scale strategy of China and the other new regional powers of building multilateral institutions parallel to those dominated by the West.

  • The United States remains the world’s most important international actor, most important military world power, and second most important economic power after the European Union. Its influence and global charisma, however, are dwindling significantly.

  • The European Union and Germany continue to be interested in a close cooperation with the United States, but the attraction of the transatlantic partnership is beginning to erode. The European Union has established numerous international ties, the most important of which are the strategic partnerships with China and India.

  • The European Union, however, is so far limited in its capability to provide global public goods and establish itself as a civil power.

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Suggested Citation Style

Kappel, Robert, und Helmut Reisen (2015), The Recalibration of the World and German Foreign Policy, GIGA Focus International Edition English, 05, June, urn:nbn:de:0168-ssoar-437277


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The German Institute for Global and Area Studies (GIGA) – Leibniz-Institut für Globale und Regionale Studien in Hamburg publishes the Focus series on Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and global issues. The GIGA Focus is edited and published by the GIGA. The views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the institute. Authors alone are responsible for the content of their articles. GIGA and the authors cannot be held liable for any errors and omissions, or for any consequences arising from the use of the information provided.

General Editor GIGA Focus Series: Prof. Dr. Sabine Kurtenbach