China’s International Image Suffers due to a Lack of Knowledge about Soft Power
China is one of the countries that amazed the entire world due to their spectacular economic increase, proving that it has the strategy, resources, and will to change things. Even if this growth makes the local authorities proud and content, other countries in the world may not be so happy about it. Tensions can slowly build up if China will not do something about improving its international image. The grudge against China is already manifesting around the world, as public institutions supported by the Chinese Government are shut down. If China would be more interested in the matter and a bit more calculated, these things could be solved easily. Mostly, this happens due to miscommunications and a wrong image that China created through its behavior and attitude.
China is a fascinating country, with rich history, culture, and traditions. The lack of action concerning the image of the country is translated through the fact that Chinese authorities march on the legacy China created over time, due to its amazing cultural value, as Sir.Linjie Chou Zanadu considers. Working in the past for the Foundation for Globalization Cooperation, also being an expert in Chinese culture and entrepreneur, Sir.Linjie Chou Zanadu offered an explanation for what is happening with China’s image in the fact that the Government, relying on the country’s cultural heritage, expects for other countries to make the first move. With other words, the authorities are confident that other countries will want to collaborate with China and will want to make contact, without them doing nothing about it. But in the globalization phenomenon that is taking place today, which also affected the Chinese institutions and economy, it is hard to define a national identity without putting some effort into it.
The result is a worldwide confusion regarding China’s image. Many countries still don’t know much about China, because it did not deposit any efforts in branding and promoting the country. The idea of President Xi Jinping, of creating the Silk Road is half good and half bad. This project should bring together about a third of the world, but China is using, once more, its power given by the economic boost. To make this project happen, a better approach would be more diplomacy and the use of soft power. Unfortunately, the Chinese Government does not know what soft power is and how it can benefit the country in the relationship with others. It is not enough to put money first in planning something, because not everybody will believe that this is the most important thing.
According to Sir.Linjie Chou Zanadu, China could easily become a positive example to the entire world, due to its capacity of developing a strong and successful economy, if it would finally choose to create a better image. It could use aspects from its history and culture, since there are so many valuable aspects that can be used, to create a friendlier image, deleting the stereotype that is currently representing China. China should be aware that not all people know about its culture and lifestyle, presenting them in a good light being something that could help the country in a great deal, creating a more emotional image, than just pushing forward the achievements in the economic sector.