US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Jan. 24 said he sees increasingly “adversarial” aspects of the United States relationship with the Chinese regime.
The change is largely because the Chinese regime has become “much more assertive, much more aggressive, whether it’s in the region or beyond, by a variety of means,” Blinken said during an online event on Monday.
The top U.S. diplomat noted the ties are growingly adversarial, rather than competitive and cooperative, two elements undergirding the Biden administration’s policies towards China.
Blinken leveled criticisms against China’s overseas infrastructure investment, state-backed investment in sensitive industries and technologies, and its attitudes towards human rights and intellectual property.
An effective way to guard against “problematic investments” from China or protect U.S. technology from flowing into the hands of the Chinese mililtary is to coordinate with allies and be more engaged in international institutions, according to Blinken.
“When it’s the United States taking this on alone, we’re 20 or 25 percent of world GDP [gross domestic product],” said Blinken, “When we’re doing it in concert with partners and allies in Europe or in Asia, it’s 40, 45 percent, 50 percent of world GDP.”
“That’s a lot harder for China to ignore.”
Building alliances and partnerships to counter a range of Chinese Communist Party economic and military abuses is key plank of the Biden administration’s approach to China.
The United States, European Union, and Japan last November announced it would renew a trilateral partnership to address challenges posed by the non-market practices.
Blinken also made his first overseas visit as secretary of state to Southeast Asia, aiming to bolster partnerships in the Indo-Pacific region. Washington is increasing investment and trade in countries like Indonesia, where they have heavy economic reliance on China.
Regarding tech competition, the administration is going to give priority to get the $52 billion CHIPS Act passed, said Blinken.
The Senate passed the legislation, including $52 billion for expanding domestic chip production, last June, but it has stalled for months in the House. Blinken called the bill a “major step forward” to boost the country’s ability to compete with Chinese technology. The House of Representatives on Tuesday unveiled its version of the bill, in a bid to negotiate a final bill with the Senate this year.
While Blinken sounded the alarm on the Chinese regime’s growing aggressions around the world, he said that fully decoupling from Beijing would be “faulty” and potentially “misguided.”
“Again, done the right way, trade, investment, including with and from China, can be a good thing,” Bliken said.
“But if the playing field is not leve—and it’s not, because of the many practices that China engages in—that is a problem that has to be very effectively addressed.”
From The Epoch Times