go to top
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang presents the government’s “work report” during the second session of the 13th National People’s Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, March 5, 2019 (Imaginechina photo via AP Images).

How China’s Rise Has Remade Global Politics

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

As much as any other single development, China’s rise over the past two decades has remade the landscape of global politics. Beginning with its entry into the World Trade Organization in December 2001, China rapidly transformed its economy from a low-cost “factory to the world” to a global leader in advanced technologies. Along the way, it has transformed global supply chains, but also international diplomacy, leveraging its success to become the primary trading and development partner for emerging economies across Asia, Africa and Latin America.

But Beijing’s emergence as a global power has also created tensions. Early expectations that China’s integration into the global economy would lead to liberalization at home and moderation abroad have proven overly optimistic, especially since President Xi Jinping rose to power in 2012. Instead, Xi has overseen a domestic crackdown on dissent, in order to shore up and expand the Chinese Communist Party’s control over every aspect of Chinese society. Needed economic reforms have been put on the backburner, while unfair trade practices, such as forced technology transfers and other restrictions for foreign corporations operating in China, have resulted in a trade war with the U.S. and increasing criticism from Europe.

Meanwhile, China’s “quiet rise” has given way to more vocal expressions of great power aspirations and a more assertive international posture, particularly with regard to China’s territorial disputes in the South China Sea. Combined with Beijing’s military modernization program, that has put Asia, but also the United States, on notice that China's economic power will have geopolitical implications.

WPR has covered China’s rise in detail, and continues to examine key questions about what will happen next. Can China sustain its economic miracle in the face of demographic and environmental challenges? Will China’s military modernization program change the balance of power in Asia and beyond? Is China seeking to reshape the rules-based international system to better reflect its interests, or is Beijing’s goal to undermine and replace it? Below are some of the highlights of WPR’s coverage.

World Politics Review

Special introductory, limited-time offer: FREE access for 14 days! Act now to take advantage of this special offer.

Get unlimited access to must-read news, analysis and opinion from top experts.

Subscribe to World Politics Review and you'll receive instant access to 9,000+ articles in the World Politics Review Library, along with new comprehensive analysis every weekday . . . written by leading topic experts.

Our Most Recent Coverage:

China Has Big Plans for Its Nuclear Energy Industry. But Will They Pan Out?

According to Chinese government projections, within the next decade China may surpass the United States as the world’s leading nuclear energy producer. Despite that growth, though, China is increasingly viewed less as the salvation of an ailing Western nuclear power industry, and more as a competitive threat.

Why China’s ‘Orwellian’ Social Credit Scheme Enjoys Domestic Support

Aspects of China’s “social credit” system, which U.S. Vice President Mike Pence has derided as “Orwellian,” have prompted valid concerns about the potential for misuse of personal information. Yet the system has pragmatic objectives that many Chinese people support, scholar Genia Kostka told WPR in an email interview for China Note, our weekly newsletter top news and expert analysis on China.

China Under Xi Jinping

Many observers in the West assumed that integrating China into the global economy would lead to domestic liberalization and international moderation. Instead, under Xi, China has pocketed the gains of its economic rise, while cracking down on what little domestic dissent had emerged under previous leaders.

The Belt and Road Initiative

China has a long history of aid and investment in the developing world. Now its global infrastructure initiative is making inroads not only in Asia and Africa, but also Europe.
World Politics Review

Special introductory, limited-time offer: FREE access for 14 days! Act now to take advantage of this special offer.

Get unlimited access to must-read news, analysis and opinion from top experts.

Subscribe to World Politics Review and you'll receive instant access to 9,000+ articles in the World Politics Review Library, along with new comprehensive analysis every weekday . . . written by leading topic experts.

China’s Military Modernization

Once primarily a personnel-heavy and ill-equipped land army, the Chinese military has overhauled itself into a force capable of fighting on land and sea, in the air and space, as well as in the cyber domain. And its cutting-edge equipment is increasingly supplied by a Chinese defense industry that has itself become a global player.

U.S.-China Relations

As optimism about China’s rise began to fade at the end of the Obama administration, the U.S. foreign policy community quickly embraced a bipartisan consensus on the need to get tough on Beijing. But President Donald Trump’s trade war and calls for a new Cold War might end up being counterproductive.Explore more of WPR's China coverage.
But this is just a fraction of what you’ll get in WPR’s searchable library of content, where you’ll find over 9,000 articles on topics such as international diplomacy, the global refugee crisis, global finance, economic trends, gender equality, water rights, and so much more!

And the World Politics Review library is searchable by author, region, and issue, so you can find specific topics quickly and easily!

An All-Access subscription to World Politics Review will allow you to:


  • Prepare your business, organization, or institution to stay ahead of the curve by better understanding critical global trends as they emerge and develop.
  • Be first to know how to act upon world events and emerging trends, with our uncompromising analysis and recommendations.
  • Save time following the most important international news and events by reading digested and curated content from the expert editors at World Politics Review.
  • Stay up to date on emerging events and trends so you can take advantage of opportunities for investment, and insulate your business from political pitfalls.
  • Speak confidently to anyone—whether at a work meeting or a cocktail party—about global events and trends, with a perspective that’s intelligent, informed, probing, analytical, and—frankly—quite impressive!


What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of 9,000+ articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Daily links to must-read news, analysis, and opinion from top sources around the globe, curated by our keen-eyed team of editors.
  • Weekly in-depth reports, including features and country- and region-specific reports.
  • Smartphone- and tablet-friendly website.
  • PDF versions of all articles for easy offline reading, at your leisure.

And all of this is available to you —right now—with a subscription to World Politics Review.

That’s right: you’ll get immediate access to all of our uncompromising global-trend analysis that delivers actionable advice for policymakers, analysts, business strategists, academics, influencers, and thought leaders who have a deep interest in international affairs.

World Politics Review

Special introductory, limited-time offer: FREE access for 14 days! Act now to take advantage of this special offer.

Get unlimited access to must-read news, analysis and opinion from top experts.

Subscribe to World Politics Review and you'll receive instant access to 9,000+ articles in the World Politics Review Library, along with new comprehensive analysis every weekday . . . written by leading topic experts.


Why not join us right now? Thousands of others already have.

World Politics Review (WPR) is produced by a vast network of leading experts and influential observers on the ground; our substantive content gives you access to comprehensive and detailed perspectives that are as valuable as they are unique and rare.

Though strictly nonpartisan with regard to political-party affiliation or allegiance, WPR relies on a reality-based approach that recognizes the need for all the tools and instruments of statecraft—with a preference for diplomacy and multilateralism in support of a rules- and norms-based global order.

WPR’s mission is simple—we’re committed to integrity, quality, and the principles of an intellectually honest press whose exclusive purpose is to inform and educate its readers.

Why not join us today and benefit from all the valuable insights you can’t get anywhere else?

World Politics Review

Special introductory, limited-time offer: FREE access for 14 days! Act now to take advantage of this special offer.

Get unlimited access to must-read news, analysis and opinion from top experts.

Subscribe to World Politics Review and you'll receive instant access to 9,000+ articles in the World Politics Review Library, along with new comprehensive analysis every weekday . . . written by leading topic experts.

MORE WORLD POLITICS REVIEW