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What is France’s role in the US-China rivalry?

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In January 2024, France and the People’s Republic of China marked 60 years of diplomatic ties. But China-France relations have been complicated by the countries’ ambitions to be world leaders, and France’s desire to exert an independent foreign policy despite being an ally of the US.

Now Beijing has pinned its hopes on France, the first port of call on Xi’s three-country European tour, to push the European Union to adopt a more “positive and pragmatic” China policy amid heightened scrutiny over Chinese products and market access in recent months.

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