Boris Johnson to visit India in January in bid to transform G7

Press quote (The Guardian)
Rory Stewart
15 December 2020

Rory Stewart, the former foreign office minister, told a Centre for European Reform event last week that the idea of “a big boys’ club of democracies” could spell “big trouble”, since it will be seen as democracies against China.

He added: “Many of the issues about which we really care, we have to involve China. And if you want to be a realist and if you are serious about challenging China, it is probably not going to work if you try to draw the dividing lines in the world between democracies and non-democracies.

“Because many of the countries which you would wish to have as potential allies in that conversation are not democracies, and indeed the danger of making the opposition to China a club of democracies you may well drive into China’s camp and into China hands, many of the countries you would want to have on your side.”

He added: “Traditionally US-UK policy would expect to have countries in the Middle East broadly in its orbit in that conversation, but if set up in a way that Gulf monarchies find themselves no longer included in the club and no longer part of what it means to have a global response to China you may find yourself in real trouble”.