Even before the pandemic, China’s popularity was rapidly deteriorating thanks to Xi Jinping’s debt-trap diplomacy and expansionist policies. The advent of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic has resulted in the popularity of China dropping to a historic low in many countries according to a poll conducted by Pew Research.
According to a recent Pew survey, China’s unpopularity has reached a historic high with Australia’s opinion of China leading the way. The poll conducted in 14 advanced economies i.e. Japan, Australia, France and the US to name a few, revealed that a median of 73% of those polled in 14 countries had unfavourable views of China.
In 9 of the countries which were polled, China’s unpopularity was at the highest ever since Pew Research had started tracking this subject more than a decade ago. The countries where China’s unpopularity has soared to an all-time high are Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Netherlands, Canada, Spain, Sweden and South Korea.
China and Australia have been at loggerheads ever since the China-made pandemic hit the world with Australia leading the charge to punish the Chinese Communist Party for its sins which has caused unmitigated havoc across the world. Hence, it comes as no surprise that China’s unpopularity is the highest in Australia with 81% of Australians having unfavourable views for China, going up by 24 points over 2019. Australia is not the only country where China’s unpopularity has seen a massive spike with UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, the US, South Korea and Spain all registering double-digit growth in China’s unpopularity in the past one year.
It comes as no surprise that China’s handling of the pandemic was the major contributing factor behind its unpopularity as a median of 61% of the respondents polled across all 14 countries believed that China had done a bad job dealing with the pandemic, worse in every case than their own country and global bodies such as WHO.
Expectedly, Xi Jinping’s personal popularity has also nosedived with a median of 78% of the respondents showing no confidence in Xi’s ability to do the right thing in world affairs.
China’s unpopularity makes it impossible for any global leader to adopt a pro-China stance with German Chancellor Angela Merkel being the latest leader to take a decidedly anti-China stance after months of acting in cahoots with the CCP and helping China escape scot-free from any culpability for its role in unleashing the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic. The public anger against China is so high that any leader wanting to stay in power, cannot do so without taking an anti-China stance. Even before the pandemic, pro-China leaders in Maldives, Malaysia and Sri Lanka had been dethroned from power. It is likely that this will continue to be the norm going forward.