China's International Image Remains Largely Negative


People in 17 of the world’s advanced economies have a broadly negative opinion of China, according to the latest survey conducted by Pew Research Center. In contrast, views of the United States have drastically improved, based on the same study. 

The surveys were conducted from February 1 to May 26, 2021, among 18,850 people in 17 advanced economies. Survey participants were from Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Singapore, Spain, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, U.K., and the U.S.

Of the 17 countries, only Greece and Singapore had a favorable view of China at 52 percent and 64 percent respectively.

Large majorities in most of the advanced economies surveyed have broadly negative views of China – including around three-quarters or more who say this in Japan (88 percent), Sweden (80 percent), Australia (78 percent), South Korea (77 percent) and the U.S. (76 percent). In many places, these unfavorable views are at or near historic highs, though they are largely unchanged since last year,” reads the report.

Graph and Data by Pew Research Center.

The survey was a follow-up to a Pew study in October 2020 that showed both the U.S. and China had a largely negative international image. In the new study, salient data shows how the world has perceived America in a significantly more positive light after President Joe Biden took office. 

In recent months, China has been the focus of an international pushback from Western powers against its perceived economic and military rise. The country’s image has also suffered greatly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, whose first cases were recorded in Wuhan, China.

In May 2021, President Xi Jinping urged China’s diplomats and government officials to create a “trustworthy, lovable, and respectable” image of China. 

Pew Research Center

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Mario Alvaro Limos
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Mario Alvaro Limos is features editor-at-large at Esquire Philippines, and heads the Lifestyle and Esports content of as its section editor. Email him at [email protected] and [email protected]
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