As Angela Merkel’s leadership of Germany heads into its final weeks, jostling is under way inside and outside the European Union to shape its future relations with China.

Her farewell tour featured a trip to Washington, a series of high-level summits with Western allies, and multiple meetings with top level American officials in Europe – each of which had China placed high on the agenda.

Also on the schedule was a series of calls with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, during which he was careful to remind her of Europe’s “strategic autonomy” and independence from the US’ China policy, while she continued to seek out areas for collaboration.

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