This article from the WSJ highlights the recent economic agreement between France and China that strengthens their ability to trade with one another. This deal has the additional effect as indicated by French President Emmanuel Macron of opening Chinese borders to greater trade and investment. Clearly, President Macron sees great value in expanding French trade and industry into Chinese borders.
The author highlights the fragile relationship between the European Union and China and the role that France is playing in this. She notes that France is pushing for a more open approach to China, working to capitalize on the aggressive Chinese expansion of trade and investment.
This deal reveals several things. First, it recognizes the present weakness of the EU in dealing with foreign threats to economic security. The EU is not united in recognizing and combating against aggressive Chinese foreign investment. Due to the importance of institutions to the global order and balance of power, a weak EU can prove to be detrimental in preventing Chinese over-investment in foreign markets.
Additionally, this deal simply recognizes the potential economic advantage of allowing China to enter one nation's markets. France is choosing to capitalize on the potentially inevitable entrance of China into European markets. This trade deal represents a mitigation of risk and may set the tone for the rest of Europe to allow China to trade and invest more heavily in Europe.