Thu, 02 Feb 2023

New Delhi [India], December 5 (ANI): German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock on Monday said that her country considers China as a partner in global challenges, "a competitor and increasingly as a systemic rival."She made these remarks during a joint press conference with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar in New Delhi.

In response to a question about Germany's concerns regarding China, Baerbock said, "As our European friends, we pursue a tripartite approach that is enshrined in our coalition treaty as well. Almost to the day we have been in office for a year. And we are pursuing a strategy with three parts. China is seen as a partner in global challenges, a competitor and increasingly as a systemic rival as well."Addressing the press conference, Baerbock acknowledged that China has changed very much in the past few years. She called it "important" to have an assessment of the challenges that lie ahead. She emphasised that the newer point included in China's strategy is the "Indo-Pacific strategy." She stated that Germany will have more diversification in the Indo-Pacific region.

"China has changed much over the last few years and I think the whole region can see and feel this. So the exchange with actors from the region is important to us, especially India as the direct neighbour. This is important for us to have a good assessment of the challenges ahead. One of the newer points in our China strategy is the Indo-Pacific strategy."Highlighting Germany's ties with India and Japan, Baerbock said, "There is huge potential for German and European companies. Until now we have been focusing very much on China, but there are also ties with India and Japan, but not so many with many other neighbouring countries."Baerbock further said, "And when it comes to India, we have both highlighted that there is huge potential for further cooperation both in terms of economic ties, but also when it comes to the security situation." She admitted that Germany knows what it means to become "strongly dependent" on one country that does not share its values with Berlin.

"In Germany, we have seen what it means when you become strongly dependent on one country, a country that does not share your values. So with a view to the political and security policy aspects and developments in the region, we will closely cooperate with our partners in the region," Baerbock said. (ANI)

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