- Tense atmosphere in Alaska
- Frigates to the Far East: Western strategies for the Indo-Pacific
- Record number of IPOs in Hong Kong
- China begins trial of detained Canadians
- Chips: SMIC plans billion-dollar factory investment
- Johnny Erling: Hi, Mom – China’s golden 80s
The verbal saber-rattling ahead of the US-China talks in Alaska was high. As recently as Wednesday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken again accused Beijing of undermining human rights in Xinjiang and Hong Kong with “coercion and aggression.” Beijing, in turn, admonished the Biden administration not to interfere in China’s internal affairs. Frank Sieren has the details on how the talks went.
In the South China Sea, however, the saber rattling is no longer just verbal. France held manoeuvres there in early 2021. Germany and the UK are also planning to increase their presence on the ground in order to contain China. Christiane Kühl shows how this fits into Germany’s Indo-Pacific strategy. The EU has also announced a strategy for the region in April.
It may come as a surprise given the COVID-19 pandemic, but 2020 was a boom year on the Hong Kong stock exchange. More than $50 billion was raised in 154 IPOs. The US-China trade war and a new US law also play a role. Gregor Koppenburg and Jörn Petring have the background.
Enjoy the read and have a great weekend,
Tense atmosphere in Alaska
Just how complicated relations between China and the US are is shown by the itinerary of Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the negotiating venue, where he flew back across the American continent from Washington via Japan and South Korea. It would have been easy for the American Secretary of State to travel two hours further to Beijing to make his inaugural visit. Instead, however, Blinken is flying back to Alaska. He thus forces Foreign Minister Wang to take an eight-hour flight and receive him on American soil. So China has to travel to the US, when in fact a new American coming into office wants to introduce himself. In any case, in this diplomatic game, the score is one to zero for Washington.
One to zero for Washington
Blinken, who made his inaugural visits to US allies Japan and South Korea before the Alaska meeting, made it clear even as he departed Seoul yesterday that the US “does not seek conflict”. However, he would always “defend our principles, our people and friends”. For his part, his spokeswoman Jen Plaski stressed in Alaska that they would talk about “difficult issues” and be “candid” about them. These included the treatment of the Muslim minority in Xinjiang, the restrictions on democracy in Hong Kong, the technology conflicts with Huawei, but also trade issues.
Still, there was a willingness to work with countries like Russia and China “when it’s in the interest of the United States to do so”. Those issues, in turn, included climate change, pandemics, and how to convince North Korea to disarm.
- Antony Blinken
- Antony Blinken
- Wang Yi
- Wang Yi
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