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The US-China Chess Game: They Do Not Want Ties to Slide into the Abyss
Monday, July 10, 2023
The US-China Chess Game: They Do Not Want Ties to Slide into the Abyss

Vladimir Skosyrev, graduate student, Lomonosov Moscow State University, in Nezavisimaya Gazeta (July 9, 2023)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: Pool/Mark Schiefelbein/AP)

The US-China Chess Game: They Do Not Want Ties to Slide into the Abyss

At the end of her visit to China, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said that the talks were frank and helped stabilize relations between the two powers. She also pointed out that there are disagreements between the United States and China on many issues. Washington is particularly concerned that Beijing is violating its World Trade Organization (WTO). She accepted that the Chinese side can raise the issue of American trade restrictions and that Washington would determine if they have gone too far.

Before Yellen, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited China. The US hopes that these trips will pave the way for Chinese leader Xi Jinping to meet with American President Joe Biden at the G20 Summit in Delhi in September or at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in San Francisco in November.

During the talks, Chinese officials expressed alarm about the restrictions on foreign investment that the United States is going to impose. But they were assured that these restrictions would not be large-scale. And if the Americans realize that they have gone too far, they will correct any misunderstanding. Chinese officials, meanwhile, made no promises that they will change industrial policy, which the US and other Western countries say violates China's commitments when it joined the WTO. Days before Yellen’s arrival, Beijing announced that, in response to US restrictions, it was imposing export controls on gallium and germanium, metals that are used in the production of semiconductors and solar cells. China is the world’s largest supplier of these metals.

As China expert Professor Andrey Karneev said, "the parties are not interested in seeing ties slide to the abyss; they want to stabilize the financial and economic relations. But deep-seated disagreements remain. Yellen's visit showed that both sides want to resolve their differences without a military conflict.”