Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Romanian Attitudes and Perceptions towards the 16+1 Cooperation Platform

Iulia Monica, Oehler-Șincai and Costin, Lianu and Cristina, Ilie and Rădulescu, Irina (2017): Romanian Attitudes and Perceptions towards the 16+1 Cooperation Platform. Published in: Working paper series of the China-CEE Institute Budapest No. 2017 (2017): pp. 1-13.

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Abstract

The aim of this paper is to analyze Romanian citizens’ attitudes and perceptions towards the 16+1 framework, their determinants and effects. The influencing factors are correlated with the general perception of China and its image, while the effects are seen from the perspectives of the engagement and level of participation in joint initiatives. Recent literature underscores that although this platform offers a range of opportunities in each of the nine pillars of sectoral cooperation, Romania has adopted a passive attitude as regards large-scale projects developed with Chinese partners. Beyond EU specific technical barriers to such projects, the Romanian attitudes towards the 16+1 strongly affected cooperation intensity with China. Positions towards this initiative (opinions from general public, elites, politicians and experts) are identified through three main channels: mass media research, individual interviews and focus groups. The quantitative analysis, combined with qualitative research, emphasizes that in spite of the recognition by some groups of the potential benefits offered by the cooperation in the 16+1 format, reluctance remains. This is not due to China’s assets-liabilities balance or the lack of capacity to understand China, but on both insufficient information on 16+1 and political inertia.

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