The EU-China’s Strategic Partnership: A Case Study of the EU’s Arms Embargo against China

  • Yixiong Huang


In 2003, the EU and China established a strategic partnership intended to deepen their bilateral relationship not only economically, but also strategically. However, the EU-China relations are still challenged by several ideological and strategic issues. This paper will evaluate the EU-China’s strategic partnership by presenting a case study of the EU’s arms embargo against China since the 1989 Tiananmen Incident. This paper will argue that although the EU-China’s strategic partnership has a strong foundation of bilateral economic and strategic cooperation, the relationship between the EU and China is still very weak: (1) ideologically, the EU is still unsatisfied with China’s human rights record and political reform process; and (2) strategically, the United States (U.S.) still plays an influential role the EU’s external decision-making process.