Brand China: How Does the Asia-Pacific View its Neighbor’s Rise?

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As China makes great strides forward both economically and geopolitically, one wonders how sentiments towards the “China” brand itself is faring in the minds of its neighbors.

The Pew Research Center recently released its 2017 Global Attitudes Survey which offers insight into China’s image in the Asia-Pacific region. The research includes people from seven APAC countries: Australia, Japan, Indonesia, The Philippines, South Korea, Vietnam and India.

Here are four key findings on how China is viewed by its neighbors:


 

View of China’s economic growth are mixed

“Australians are most positive about China’s economic growth; by a three-to-one margin, more people say China’s economic growth is good for Australia than bad,” writes Laura Silver, senior researcher at Pew Research Center. “In contrast, only 20% of Indians see China’s economic rise as a good thing for their country.”

Most worry about China’s growing military power

“In South Korea, Japan and Vietnam – countries actively engaged in disputes with China over military deployments or territory in the East and South China seas – nine-in-ten or more think China’s growing military power is a bad thing for their country.”


 

China not seen as a top threat globally, but many view it as a key concern

While outside the region a median of 27% see China’s power and influence as a major threat to their country, “Among the seven Asia-Pacific countries surveyed, a median of 47% see it as a major threat.”

The report notes that the two U.S. treaty-allies in the region, Australia and South Korea, have more confidence in Xi than they do in American president, Donald Trump.

The survey found that South Koreans and Vietnamese rate China as the top threat facing their nations.

Few have confidence in Chinese President Xi Jinping

“A median of 34% across the Asia-Pacific region say they have a lot or some confidence in him, ranging from a high of 53% in the Philippines to a low of 11% in Japan – a country where not even 1% say they have a lot of confidence in him.”

The report notes that the two U.S. treaty-allies in the region, Australia and South Korea, have more confidence in Xi than they do in American president, Donald Trump.


You can read more on the Pew survey here.

 

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