Biden shot”three arrows” against China? Not so easy
Before Biden took office, the US Congress also held a hearing on Biden’s list of cabinet officials. Including Blincoln, who was nominated as Secretary of State, and Yellen, who was nominated as Treasury Secretary, have all sent strong signals against China. Haynes, who was nominated as Director of National Intelligence, also said that he would regain the so-called”human rights card” and cooperate with Biden. The election language in the election campaign remains consistent. Diplomacy, economics and intelligence, Biden’s staff shot”three arrows” at China. How to understand these election language or hearing language of Biden government officials, and what clues will Biden’s China policy reveal in the future? Look at the analysis.
The appointment hearing sponsored by the U.S. Senate is a personnel procedure that important U.S. officials must go through before taking office. Although almost all candidates nominated by the president are passed, the senators will use this opportunity to thoroughly investigate the policies of the officials-designate. The officials-designate will also regard this occasion as the”first show in dealing with Congress.””. Opposition senators usually”torture” the officials designate, and the officials designate usually try to express themselves. In the end, appointment hearings generally end with”a group of peace.”
On Tuesday, Brinken claimed at the hearing of the Senate to approve his appointment that the United States is facing increasing competition, in which China constitutes The”threat” is the greatest. He also proposed that the United States can”surpass” the rapidly rising China through democratic values.
Blinken is regarded as the”smiling hawk” of Biden’s cabinet. However, he rarely shouted to US allies who had been”harmed” by Trump at the hearing. He reiterated Biden’s platform for uniting US allies and proposed that the United States should”maintain humility.” Brinken believes that when the United States does not assume the leadership role, other countries will try to replace the United States, which is not conducive to the promotion of American values or interests; or the absence of the United States will bring the world into chaos, no matter what the situation is. The United States does no good.
The”Wall Street Journal” also recently issued an article stating that it is not so easy for the new US government to be tough on China. Even though the two parties in the United States have reached a consensus on being tough on China, Biden intends to draw allies to respond. China, but the cards in the US are losing. From an economic point of view, Trump’s high economic and trade pressure on China is counterproductive, and instead creates a pattern of international capital competing to flow into China. Outside the United States, China’s trading position has risen sharply.
Josh Lipsky of the American Atlantic Council, a think tank, believes that China has gained a”strong” negotiating position under the pressure of the United States, and China’s attractiveness is stronger than in 2017 . Du Dawei, a former official of the U.S. Treasury Department, also pointed out that compared with the United States, American allies are generally not interested in economic”decoupling” from China. If the United States forcibly promotes”decoupling”, it will only make the United States more isolated.
Blinken also talked about the Taiwan issue. He stated that the United States”will ensure that Taiwan has the ability to defend itself” and hinted that it will continue to promote arms sales to Taiwan. Last week, Trump’s appointment of US ambassador to the United Nations Kraft’s visit to Taiwan was cancelled before his departure. Observations pointed out that Brinken was calling a stop to this violation of the “One China” policy. Later, he instructed Biden’s important staff, Allison, to accept an interview with the Taiwan media and directly shouted to the DPP, emphasizing that Biden adhered to the one-China policy and shattered the illusions of the”Taiwan independence” forces that were ready to move during the Trump era.
As for the so-called Taiwan’s participation in international affairs that the Tsai administration has swaggered, Brinken directly threw out the solution of the previous US administrations before Trump took office. Brinken emphasized that for organizations that do not require participation in the name of the country, Taiwan can participate, but for international organizations that require participation in the name of the country, Taiwan”should participate in other ways.” Shenzhen Satellite TV noticed that after the US”beaten” the DPP authorities, Taiwan rarely did not promote the so-called”Taiwan joins the WHO” proposal at the WHO Executive Committee video conference this year.
Peng Jinpeng, an associate professor of the Department of Political Science at National Taiwan University, believes that Trump had previously spoken badly about the WHO, and that Biden will inevitably mend his relationship with the WHO after he took office. Therefore, the Cai government was “consciously” abandoning the proposal to avoid Biden is regarded as a”trouble maker”.
On Tuesday, the appointment hearing of Treasury Secretary Yellen also deserves attention. Yellen is the former chairman of the Federal Reserve. The outside world pays close attention to Yellen’s proposal to continue to advance a new round of large-scale economic stimulus plan. Last week, Biden proposed a US$1.9 trillion”American Rescue Plan”, including a cash subsidy of US$1,400 for each eligible American. However, the analysis believes that the money will mainly flow to high-quality and cheap imported goods, especially Chinese goods. This also means that the US trade deficit will further expand with the stimulus plan.
This also brings new challenges to Yellen’s handling of Sino-US economic and trade issues. Yellen said on Tuesday that China is the most important strategic competitor. She stated that the United States will”prepare to use all means” to respond to China’s so-called”dumping of products, setting up trade barriers and illegally subsidizing enterprises”. She believes that these measures”weaken the competitiveness of US companies.” But unlike Trump’s emphasis on so-called”punishment” measures and unilateral negotiations, Yellen emphasized that she spends more energy on”enhancing the hematopoietic function of American companies,” including increasing investment in infrastructure and research and development.
In an interview with The New York Times last month, Biden said that he would not take any immediate action on Trump’s tariffs on US$350 billion worth of Chinese imports. Yellen said at the hearing on Tuesday that sanctions will remain largely an important tool of the US Treasury Department. Although she did not elaborate on how the Biden administration will treat China’s tariffs, she said that the United States will seek to “cooperate with allies, not alone” to resolve economic and trade issues with China. Singapore’s”Lianhe Zaobao” believes that Yellen may be suggesting that Trump will change the practice of imposing additional high tariffs on all US allies, instead trying to unite allies to impose high tariffs on Chinese products. However, both RCEP and the China-Europe Investment Agreement have been signed. The European countries involved, as well as Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand are all export-oriented economies, so it is unlikely that they will follow the United States to engage in tariff barriers.
Analysis pointed out that Trump left Biden with a mess in foreign trade. Under the tariff war, the U.S. trade deficit rose instead of falling, reaching the highest level in history. The operating costs of U.S. companies also increased. Import tariffs have been rising steadily. After Yellen takes over the Ministry of Finance, he will also face the issue of TikTok’s split and Trump’s characterization of Xiaomi and other Chinese private companies as so-called”military-related” issues. These issues will be resolved within a few weeks after Biden takes office. Inside, it’s a complete mess. Whether Yellen wants to inherit these”mess” or focus on solving the problem will soon see the truth.
“The Third Arrow”:Intelligence
In addition, Biden’s Director of National Intelligence Haynes stated at the appointment hearing on Tuesday that he will “continue to implement the US Rigorously review the route and urge intelligence agencies to help solve the new crown epidemic.” Haynes emphasized that the focus of her intelligence collection is the so-called human rights issue in China.
The observation pointed out that the Democratic Party has always been an important promoter of the human rights card, but the United States withdrew from the UN Human Rights Council in 2018. In 2020, the United States experienced a widespread social turmoil in which”blacks’ lives are also fate”. After the riots in Washington on the 6th, the European media uttered the sad cry that the United States’ self-proclaimed”beacon of democracy and freedom” was extinguished. So far, 402,000 Americans have died from the new crown pandemic, but Biden has to use the same old methods to fight again. The human rights card is seriously lacking in persuasiveness to the international community.
It is worth noting that Sino-US relations are facing an opportunity to be restored. In a congratulatory message to Biden on his election last November, President Xi Jinping pointed out that promoting the healthy and stable development of Sino-US relations not only conforms to the fundamental interests of the two peoples, but also the common expectation of the international community. It is hoped that the two sides will uphold the spirit of non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect, and win-win cooperation, focus on cooperation, manage differences, promote the healthy and stable development of Sino-US relations, and work with all countries and the international community to advance the noble cause of world peace and development.
On January 6, Xi Jinping replied to Howard Schultz, Honorary Chairman of the Board of Directors of Starbucks, and encouraged him and Starbucks to continue to play an active role in promoting Sino-US economic and trade cooperation and the development of bilateral relations. In his reply, Xi Jinping emphasized that China has embarked on a new journey of building a socialist modern country in an all-round way, which will provide a broader space for companies from all over the world, including Starbucks and other American companies, to develop in China.
Schultz opened Starbucks’ first branch in China in 1999, and China has become Starbucks’ largest market outside of the United States. Schultz also visits China frequently. He stated in a public event in 2020 that China is not an enemy of the United States, but a competitor worthy of attention.
Previously, Schultz wrote to President Xi Jinping to congratulate China on the completion of a moderately prosperous society under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, and to express his respect for the Chinese people and Chinese culture. Regarding the rare correspondence between Chinese national leaders and foreign business leaders in this round, some observations pointed out that the American business community has keenly sensed that Biden is likely to repair relations with China, and therefore intends to indicate to the Biden administration that US business expects to strengthen its relationship with China. China’s attitude towards cooperation, and the Chinese leaders responded in good faith. In fact, they reiterated China’s commitment to “open the door wider and wider”.