China’s Strategy Toward Central and Eastern Europe Within the Framework of 16 + 1 Group: The Case of Poland

  • Jędrzej Górski
Part of the Palgrave Studies of Internationalization in Emerging Markets book series (PSIEM)


Since 2012, the 16 + 1 Group has served China to advance its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in co-operation with the Central and Eastern European countries (CEECs). Poland is the largest of them in terms of demography and economy, and is geographically predestined to be a hub, with railways coming to Europe from the East across Russia and from the South via the Balkans. The economic reintegration of Eurasia under the BRI would elevate the CEECs on the chain of value and production. Nonetheless, for the time being the CEECs are not yet ready for a major geopolitical shift, such as a break-up from the European Union and some, like Poland, still strongly prefer to keep the Trans-Pacific alliance in place, which hinders Chinese projects that also involve Russia.


China Poland Central and Eastern Europe Silk Road 16 + 1 Group 


  1. Burrows, Mathew, and Robert A. Manning 2015. America’s Worst Nightmare: Russia and China Are Getting Closer. The National Interest, August 24. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  2. Chia-pin, Liang. 1930. History of the Chinese Eastern Railway: A Chinese Version. Pacific Affairs 3 (2): 188–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. China-CEEC. 2013. The Bucharest Guidelines for Cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European Countries (November 26). Accessed August 18, 2017.
  4. China Daily. 2015. China, Five CEE Countries Signed Memo to Promote Belt and Road Initiative. China Daily, November 26. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  5. Chinese Embassy to Poland. 2011. Wspólne Oświadczenie Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej i Chińskiej Republiki Ludowej w Sprawie Ustanowienia Partnerskich Stosunków Strategicznych [Joint Declaration of the Republic of Poland and of the People’s Republic of China on the Establishment of the Strategic-Partnership Relations]. Accessed July 30, 2017.
  6. CHIPOLBROK. n.d. History. Accessed August 22, 2017.
  7. Cienciala, Anna M. 1985. The Activities of Polish Communists as a Source for Stalin’s Policy Towards Poland in the Second World War. The International History Review 7 (1): 129–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Council of Ministers [Rada Ministrów]. 2016. Uchwała Rady Ministrów z Dnia w Sprawie Przyjęcia Planu na Rzecz Odpowiedzialnego Rozwoju. [Resolution of the Council of Ministers on the Adoption of the Action Plan for Responsible Development of Poland]. No. RM-111-18-16 (adopted 16 February 2016).Google Scholar
  9. Du, Michael M. 2016. China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ Initiative: Context, Focus, Institutions, and Implications. Chinese Journal of Global Governance 2 (1): 30–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. EUEA (European Union External Action). 2013. EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation 2013. Signed in Beijing on November 21, 2013 during 16th EU-China Summit. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  11. European Commission. 2013. Joint Communication to the European Parliament and the Council: Elements for a New EU Strategy on China. JOIN (2016) 30 final (Brussels, June 22, 2016).Google Scholar
  12. Fasslabend, Werner. 2015. The Silk Road: A Political Marketing Concept for World Dominance. European View 14 (2): 293–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Ferdinand, Peter. 2016. Westward Ho—The China Dream and ‘One Belt, One Road’: Chinese Foreign Policy Under Xi Jinping. International Affairs 92 (4): 941–957.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fisher, Harold H. 1949. Soviet Policies in Asia. American Academy of Political and Social Science 263 (May): 188–201.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. FMPRC (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China). 2012. China’s Twelve Measures for Promoting Friendly Cooperation with Central and Eastern European Countries (April 26). Accessed August 18, 2017.
  16. ———. 2014. The Belgrade Guidelines for Cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European Countries (December 16). Accessed August 18, 2017.
  17. ———. 2015. The Suzhou Guidelines for Cooperation Between China and Central and Eastern European Countries (November 24). Accessed August 18, 2017.
  18. GoniecTV Toronto. 2015. Antoni Macierewicz i Marcin Gugulski Toronto 2015. Released November 3, 2015. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  19. Górski, Jędrzej. 2016. PRC’s Co-Operation with Central and Eastern European Countries in the Context of the One Belt One Road Initiative. The Case of 2016 Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the PRC and Poland. Chinese University of Hong Kong Centre for Financial Regulation and Economic Development, Working Paper No. 19 (September): 1–100.Google Scholar
  20. ———. 2017. Central and Eastern Europe, Group 16 + 1 and One Belt One Road: The Case of 2016 Sino–Polish Comprehensive Strategic Partnership. Transnational Dispute Management 14 (3): 1–38.Google Scholar
  21. Gruson, Sydney. 1956. Red China Supports Poles Against Moscow Dictation. New York Times, 1–2, October 16.Google Scholar
  22. Hobsbawm, Eric J. 1954. The General Crisis of the European Economy in the 17th Century. Past and Present Society 5: 33–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Holslag, Jonathan. 2011. The Elusive Axis: Assessing the EU-China Strategic Partnership. Journal of Common Market Studies 49 (2): 293–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. IPR (Institute of Pacific Relations). 1934. Memorandum on the Chinese Eastern Railway. Memorandum (Institute of Pacific Relations, American Council) 3 (24, Dec.): 1–4.Google Scholar
  25. Jan, George P. 1961. Sino–Polish Relations, 1956–1958. The Polish Review 6 (4): 93–106.Google Scholar
  26. Jing, Fu, and Wensha Li. 2016. Polish President Says Xi Jinping Understands Central European Dynamic. Xinhua, June 19. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  27. Jinghe, Luan. 2007. The 1945 Chinese-Soviet Treaty on Friendship and Alliance, and the 1950 Treaty on Friendship, Alliance, and Mutual Assistance Between China and the Soviet Union (Comparative Analysis). Far Eastern Affairs 34 (2): 98–117.Google Scholar
  28. Karayalcin, Cem. 2016. Property Rights and the First Great Divergence: Europe 1500–1800. International Review of Economics and Finance 42: 484–498.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kemp-Welch, Tony. 2006. Dethroning Stalin: Poland 1956 and Its Legacy. Europe-Asia Studies 58 (8): 1261–1284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Khor, Martin. 2015. Many in West Back Winds of Change in World. China Daily, 21, April 23.Google Scholar
  31. Kim, Yong-Deog. 2010. Życie Kulturalne Polaków w Mandżurii w Latach 1897–1947 [Cultural Life of Poles in Manchuria in 1897–1947]. Postscriptum Polonistyczne 6 (2): 117–142.Google Scholar
  32. Lüthi, Lorenz M. 2015. China and East Europe, 1956–1960. Modern China Studies 22 (1): 233–257.Google Scholar
  33. Mackinder, Halford. 1904. The Geographical Pivot of History. The Geographical Journal 23 (4): 421–437.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Malinowski, Mikolaj. 2016. Little Divergence Revisited: Polish Weighted Real Wages in a European Perspective, 1500–1800. European Review of Economic History 20 (3): 345–367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Malinowski, Mikołaj, and Jan Luiten van Zanden. 2015. National Income and Its Distribution in Preindustrial Poland in a Global Perspective. European Historical Economics Society Working Paper No. 76 (May): 1–35.Google Scholar
  36. Moustafine, Mara. 2013. Russians from China: Migrations and Identity. Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 5 (2): 143–158.Google Scholar
  37. NDRC (National Development and Reform Commission), FMPRC (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China) and MOFCOM (Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China). 2015. Vision and Actions on Jointly Building Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road (March 28). Accessed August 18, 2017.
  38. Neja, Jarosław. 2002. Polacy w Mandżurii [Poles in Manchuria]. Biuletyn Instytutu Pamięci Narodowej 3: 34–41.Google Scholar
  39. Newsweek Poland. 2017. Nowy Jedwabny Szlak. Macierewicz Widzi w Chińskim Projekcie Spisek [New Silk Road. Macierewicz Sees a Conspiracy in the Chinese Project]. Newsweek Poland, February 13 (last modified February 22, 2017). Accessed August 26, 2017.,artykuly,405078,1.html
  40. Orłowski, Bolesław. 2006. Kolej Transsyberyjska—Wkład Polaków w Jej Budowę [The Trans-Siberian Railway—Poles’ Contribution to Its Development]. Inżynier Budownictwa 10: 46–48.Google Scholar
  41. Oxford Analytica. 2017. EU: Trump Warsaw Visit Will Widen Intra-European Rifts. Oxford Analytica Daily Brief Service, 1, July 10. ProQuest ID: 1917357061. Accessed August 26, 2017. 917357061?accountid=10371
  42. PAIiIZ (Polska Agencja Informacji i Inwestycji Zagranicznych). n.d. Historia Stosunków Polsko-Chińskich. [History of Sino–Polish Relations]. Accessed August 22, 2017.
  43. Perkins, J.A. 1986. Dualism in German Agrarian Historiography. Comparative Studies in Society 28 (2): 287–306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Persak, Krzysztof. 2006. The Polish: Soviet Confrontation in 1956 and the Attempted Soviet Military Intervention in Poland. Europe-Asia Studies 58 (8): 1285–1310.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Predsjednica Republike Hrvatske (President of the Republic of Croatia). 2016. The Joint Statement on the Three Seas Initiative (The Dubrovnik Statement). (Dubrovnik, August 25, 2016). Accessed August 26, 2017.
  46. Prezydent Rzeczypospolitej Polski (President of Poland). 2016. Wspólne Oświadczenie w Sprawie Ustanowienia Wszechstronnego Strategicznego Partnerstwa Między Rzecząpospolitą Polską a Chińską Republiką Ludową [Joint Declaration on the Establishment of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between Republic of Poland and People’s Republic of China]. (June 20, 2016). Accessed August 26, 2017.
  47. Sejm (lower chamber of Polish Parliament). 2016. Projekt Ustawy o Ratyfikacji Umowy o Utworzeniu Azjatyckiego Banku Inwestycji Infrastrukturalnych, Sporządzonej w Pekinie Dnia 29 Czerwca. [Bill of the Statute Ratifying the Agreement on the Establishment of the Eurasian Infrastruture Investment Bank Done in Beijing on 29 June]. Parliamentary Printed Matter no. 246 (submitted 8 February).Google Scholar
  48. Skorupska, Adriana, and Justyna Szczudlik-Tatar. 2014. Współpraca Regionalna Kluczem do Strategicznego Partnerstwa Polski i Chin [Regional Co-operation as a Key to Strategic Sino–Polish Partnership]. PISM Strategic File 25 (61, Nov.): 1–6.Google Scholar
  49. Steinbock, Dan. 2015. Beginning of AIIB Epoch Benefits All. China Daily, 12, July 1.Google Scholar
  50. Summers, Tim. 2016. China’s ‘New Silk Roads’: Sub-national Regions and Networks of Global Political Economy. Third World Quarterly 37 (9): 1628–1643.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Suokas, Janne. 2017. China-led AIIB Mulls Co-inancing Airport Project in Poland. Global Time, April 28. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  52. Thackrah, J.R. 1976. Aspects of American and British Policy towards Poland from the Yalta to the Potsdam Conferences, 1945. The Polish Review 21 (4): 3–34.Google Scholar
  53. Tian, Shaohui. 2016. China, Czech Republic Set Up Strategic Partnership. Xinhua, March 30. Accessed August 13, 2017.
  54. Torańska, Teresa. 1987. Oni: Stalin’s Polish Puppets. London: Collins/Harvill.Google Scholar
  55. Urbansky, Sören, 2012. A Very Orderly Friendship: The Sino-Soviet Border under the Alliance Regime, 1950–1960. Eurasia Border Review (Special Issue on China’s Post-Revolutionary Borders, 1940s–1960s): 35–52.Google Scholar
  56. Uyanayev, Sergei. 2015. The Chinese One Belt, One Road Project: Concept, Plan, and Cooperation with Russia. Far Eastern Affairs 43 (4): 12–29.Google Scholar
  57. Wang, Yiwei. 2015. China’s “New Silk Road”: A Case Study in EU-China Relations. In Xi’s Policy Gambles: The Bumpy Road Ahead, ed. Alessia Amighini and Axel Berkofsky. Novi Ligure: Edizioni Epoké.Google Scholar
  58. White House. 2017b. Remarks at the Three Seas Initiative Summit in Warsaw, Poland. Trump, Donald J. Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents. Washington, July 6, 2017: 1–3. ProQuest ID: 1927853989. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  59. Winiarz, Adam. 2011. Wychowanie Fizyczne i Sport w Życiu Polonii Mandżurskiej [Physical Education and Sport in the Life of Manchuria’s Polish Diaspora]. Prace Naukowe Akademickie im. Jana Długosza w Częstochowie Seria Pedagogika 20: 351–361.Google Scholar
  60. Xi, Jinping. 2016. Full Text of Chinese President’s Signed Article on Polish Newspaper. Xinhua, June 17. Accessed August 26, 2017.
  61. Xinhua. 2015. Polish President: Poland Can Act as Ambassador in Relations between China, Europe. Xinhua, November 23. Accessed August 26, 2017.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jędrzej Górski
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Asian and International Studies, City University of Hong KongHong KongChina

Personalised recommendations