Washington Continues Political and Economic Offensive on Beijing
The US authorities are conducting a decisive campaign to counter China. US President Donald Trump signed the sanctions law on Beijing in connection with the situation in Hong Kong, as well as an executive decree on the abolition of trade and economic preferences for this Special Administrative Region of the PRC. A blow to Beijing was also inflicted by the main ally of Washington in Europe – Great Britain. Beijing has already stated that they are not afraid of sanctions, and threatened with retaliatory measures.
“From now on, the attitude to Hong Kong will be the same as to mainland China. No special privileges, no special economic relations, no export of sensitive technologies, ”Donald Trump, speaking to reporters in the White House’s Rose Garden, got down to business almost immediately. He announced the signing of a law punishing those responsible for undermining Hong Kong’s freedoms. The president also emphasized that he believes China is responsible for the COVID-19 epidemic. “They could stop her,” the head of state said.
Having dealt with the “Chinese” part of speech quite quickly, Donald Trump turned to an obviously more significant topic for him personally and a more significant person for him personally. Joe Biden – this is the politician, his main opponent in the upcoming presidential election, Donald Trump mentioned almost 30 times.
Mr. Trump deftly linked both themes together, saying that “Biden’s entire career is a gift from the Chinese Communist Party,” and the democrat himself will “destroy the country.”
However, it was the “Chinese” part of the president’s speech that was most significant. The measures he announced were far from Washington’s only anti-Chinese initiatives. On Monday, July 13, US authorities officially announced their disagreement with Beijing’s claims for the South China Sea. Last week, U.S. authorities imposed sanctions on those responsible, in their opinion, for the persecution of Muslim Uighurs in the Chinese Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. And the president himself warned that the second part of the trade deal between the two countries was hanging by a thread.
The political and economic offensive on China at that time was carried out overseas.
On Wednesday, July 15, US National Security Advisor Robert O`Brien completed a three-day visit to Europe: in Paris, he and his colleagues from France, the UK and Germany tried to “check the clock” on the most important issues of world politics, primarily in the Chinese area .
Despite the coronavirus fashion, Mr. O’Brien’s visit was not remote: the plane with the American delegation arrived in the French capital on Monday. “Making statements face to face is more efficient. There are no substitutes for human diplomacy. Nothing will work out on Skype ”- an unnamed interlocutor in the US administration explained to Politico the reasons for the decision to hold a meeting in person. The National Security Advisor and the officials accompanying him were among the few lucky ones who, despite the difficult epidemiological situation in the United States, were able to visit the EU – it is closed to most Americans.
In Paris, Mr. O’Brien was visited by his deputy, Matt Pottinger, a former correspondent for The Wall Street Journal specializing in China, and Ryan Tully, the new senior director for Europe and Russia at the White House National Security Council. For him, the first day of the visit was the first day at a new workplace. American guests also included lower-ranking officials and several journalists.
Mr. Pottinger predictably became one of the main actors, which was due to the topic of negotiations: one of the main topics was the competition between China and the West. In particular, it was about establishing supply chains and deploying fifth-generation 5G networks in Europe – the United States tried to persuade partners to refuse the services of the Chinese company Huawei, which Washington recognized as a threat to national security.
Starting August 13, all US government agencies will be prohibited from interacting with contractors whose supply chains involve products from five Chinese companies, including Huawei, but government officials are asking for a delay: the ban is being proposed very stringently and it takes longer to prepare it.
And if the situation in the USA has so far “frozen”, the UK has gone ahead to meet the overseas ally: London, contrary to its January decision, forbade Huawei to take part in the deployment of 5G networks in the country, having decided by 2027 to completely exclude the company’s equipment from the corresponding infrastructure. Mr. O`Brien welcomed this decision.
For a company operating in the United Kingdom for 20 years, this is a tangible blow: Europe accounts for 24% of all Huawei sales.
There is a threat of Britain’s transition to “digital slow-moving”, an increase in Internet access tariffs and increased stratification in the issue of the availability of digital services, ”commented the representative of the company in the UK Ed Brewster.