søndag 28. april 2019

Can China do soft power? Poorly organised yet tightly controlled forum raises questions

Traffic woes, poor organisation and tight media control during China’s most important diplomatic event of the year have again raised questions over its ability to project soft power. While Beijing attempted to dispel foreign fears over its “Belt and Road Initiative” and cement its legitimacy as a global development programme during the three-day forum, which ends on Saturday, its attempts at soft power fell flat for many of those attending.

Lack of a clear schedule often left attendees either waiting for hours on end or scrambling to catch up after an event started suddenly. One delegate from a European country complained that the forum was chaotic, saying there was no clear agenda provided – only a schedule giving time slots for speakers.