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MERICS researchers discuss and analyze developments and current affairs in China: What is behind the Belt and Road Initiative? What kind of leader is Xi Jinping? How should we assess China’s climate change policies? How does the Chinese government use social media to its own ends?

In addition to MERICS’s own staff, other experts on China and guest speakers at MERICS also take part in the interviews.

Follow us on Soundcloud or iTunes to see which podcasts we are currently airing.

Akio Takahara: China’s foreign policy & the difficult relations with Japan

February 1, 2016

After years of economic growth, China is claiming more influence on the international stage. Behind President Xi Jinping’s efforts to enhance China’s status as a nation lie domestic motives, says Akio Takahara in this podcast. Xi wants to maintain the power of the Communist Party, stability and economic growth of the country. Takahara, professor for contemporary Chinese politics at the university of Tokyo and visiting academic fellow at MERICS, analyses China’s ambitious foreign policy from a Japanese angle. He gives keen insights into the ups and downs in the relationship between Beijing and Tokyo, and describes the worries of the neighboring countries over China’s growing assertiveness in territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

Scott Kennedy: China’s economy and the new five year plan

January 1, 2016

For the current leaders “muddling through” is good enough
As China gets ready to welcome the year of the monkey and to adopt a new five year plan, Scott Kennedy of the Center for International and Strategic Studies in Washington (CSIS) examines the challenges for the Chinese leadership. Sluggish growth and clumsy stock market interventions have cast a shadow of doubt on the leadership’s ability to manage the economy.
How can China move from investment-led growth to more consumption and services? “China still has the chance to grow relatively rapidly for a decade or two if they adopt the right policies”, says Kennedy. But he also has a stark warning for the leadership under Xi Jinping: “If China doesn’t become more productive and innovative soon and doesn’t improve its regulatory environment, a lot of foreign investment is going to go elsewhere.” Listen to our “MERICS Experts” podcast with Scott Kennedy.