China wants to be less reliant on the United States. That’s a tall order

By Laura HeCNN Business

Updated 1039 GMT (1839 HKT) October 30, 2020

Chinese leaders meet to chart economic course
Chinese leaders meet to chart economic course

Hong Kong (CNN Business) China wants to counter the United States by boosting its technological capabilities and becoming more self sufficient. That’s easier said than done.Beijing outlined its goal for more economic independence this week as the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee put together its latest Five-Year Plan. The 14th iteration of the vast policy framework will cover 2021 to 2025, and is key to setting the country’s political and economic agenda.The full scope of the plan might not be known for months, but a statement published Thursday said that China wants to focus on economic self-reliance and technological independence. Doing so would help insulate the country from US attempts to restrict its access to critical technologies.”[We will] nurture a strong domestic market and establish a new development pattern,” the statement said. “Domestic consumption will be a strategic focus.”Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers a speech in Shenzhen on October 14.Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers a speech in Shenzhen on October 14.

Light on detail

The statement did not yet outline any specific targets.But messages from Beijing are being closely watched right now.The world’s second largest economy is likely to be the only major world power to expand this year as the coronavirus pandemic prevents growth elsewhere. China’s future is also closely tied to its unfolding trade and technology war with the United States, and tensions between the two are getting worse.

The US-China fight began with trade. Now it's the one thing still working for them

The US-China fight began with trade. Now it’s the one thing still working for them

“Economic globalization is facing headwinds now,” said Han Wenxiu, a senior finance official from the Communist Party’s Central Committee during a press conference Friday. The pandemic, coupled with rising protectionism, has weakened international economic cooperation, Han added.The need for innovation at home was underscored byWang Zhigang, China’s Minister of Science and Technology.”Technological self sufficiency is a strategic pillar of the nation’s development,” Wang said. “We must boost independent innovation and do our own job well. That’s because key technologies can’t be bought or asked for [from others].”

Easier said than done

China’s desire to achieve economic self-sufficiency isn’t a new one. Many of the country’s Five-Year Plans have prioritized sustainable growth and expanding domestic industry. And a recent, ambitious 10-year plan — “Made in China 2025″ — was created to push China’s manufacturing sector into more advanced technological fields.But achieving economic independence is easier said than done.”There is no guarantee that efforts to boost self-sufficiency in specific sectors will succeed,” wrote Julian Evans-Pritchard, senior China economist for Capital Economics, in a research note late last week.Evans-Pritchard pointed out that unforeseen events can derail China’s plans, such as when an outbreak of African Swine Fever decimated the country’s pork industry last year. The disease wiped out a third of China’s pig population, causing a shortage that forced China to import massive amounts of meat.

China's pork crisis may be easing but price rises are still in the cards

China’s pork crisis may be easing but price rises are still in the cards

For advanced sectors, shedding foreign independence is even more difficult. China is hugely reliant on other countries for the chipsets it needs to build the next generation of technology. The country imported more than $300 billion worth of chips last year, about $64 billion more than it spent on crude oil.”Made in China 2025″ was intended to help China reduce that reliance, and included goals for 40% of chips to be produced domestically by 2020. That share was supposed to increase to 70% by 2025.But the country doesn’t appear to be anywhere close to achieving those targets. Last year, less than 16% of the chips that China needed were produced within the country’s borders, according to an estimate published earlier this year by IC Insights.”Given the large gap between China and the US in the semiconductor industry, China will have to make gigantic investments over a long period in order to catch up with material progress,” according to Chaoping Zhu, global market strategist for JP Morgan Asset Management based in Shanghai.He wrote in a report Friday that it’s doubtful as to whether China will be able to achieve self-reliance in a variety of areas, with chips on top of that list.Economic self sufficiency is also not always good for economic development, according to Evans-Pritchard. He noted that companies are most productive when they can freely choose between domestic or imported inputs without political interference.”Pursuing self-sufficiency is (literally) a textbook way to depress productivity,” he wrote.

Beijing’s hands might be tied

China might not have a choice, though, when it comes to pursuing further economic independence.Washington and Beijing have been locked in an escalating battle over technology, trade and national security. Tensions have only increased this year as they blame each other for starting and mishandling the coronavirus pandemic and clash over Hong Kong and alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

A new world war over technology

A new world war over technology

The spat has led the United States to slap heavy sanctions on Chinese companies that rely on US technology to survive, including tech firm Huawei. Other tech champions, including China’s biggest chipmaker SMIC, have also entered Washington’s crosshairs.”Facing the risks of widening restrictions, it is increasingly critical for China to develop domestic capacity and reduce its dependence on foreign technology, ” wrote Zhufrom JP Morgan.Evans-Pritchard said that China still needs to figure out a way to address its biggest problems, including an over-reliance on infrastructure-focused investment as a means to protect growth and an aging population.”Without faster progress in addressing structural problems, we think growth could slow to just 2% by 2030,” he said.

How China’s Xi Jinping blew a golden opportunity with US President Donald Trump

Analysis by Ben Westcott, CNN

Updated 1903 GMT (0303 HKT) October 31, 2020

Trump blames China for outbreak. See how they responded.

Hong Kong (CNN) At the first meeting between Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping, held over chocolate cake and sorbet at the US President’s vast Mar-a-Lago private club in Florida, the two leaders seemed on the brink of establishing an unlikely and potentially special relationship.Trump, less than three months into his first term, had spent his election campaign denouncing the Chinese government for undermining the United States, through a wide trade imbalance and cheap labor. “We can’t continue to allow China to rape our country,” Trump said in May 2016.But when Trump was standing alongside Xi at Mar-a-Lago the following April, his tone changed dramatically. The two leaders exchanged compliments during a news conference, with Trump describing their relationship as “outstanding.” Pictures from the meeting showed the two men sitting side-by-side, smiling broadly, on a golden couch.”It was a great honor to have President Xi Jinping and Madame Peng Liyuan of China as our guests … Tremendous goodwill and friendship was formed,” Trump tweeted shortly after the visit.US President Donald Trump poses with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan upon their arrival at the Mar-a-Lago estate in West Palm Beach, Florida, on April 6, 2017.US President Donald Trump poses with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan upon their arrival at the Mar-a-Lago estate in West Palm Beach, Florida, on April 6, 2017.

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The Great American Recovery: Third Quarter GDP Blows Past Expectations

October 29, 2020 The White House

4 minute read

Council of Economic Advisers 

After releasing his plan to reopen America safely in April, President Trump remarked that prior to the Coronavirus pandemic, the United States had “built the greatest economy anywhere in the world . . .  and we’re going to build it again.”

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China’s military rise poses the greatest foreign policy challenge to the next US President

Analysis by Brad Lendon, CNN

Updated 0300 GMT (1100 HKT) October 30, 2020

Rare footage shows US patrol of South China Sea

BEIJING, CHINA - NOVEMBER 12: The plainclothes policemen guard in front of Tiananmen Gate outside the Great Hall of the People where the Communist Party's 205-member Central Committee gathered for its third annual plenum on November 12, 2013 in Beijing, China. The 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) approved a decision on "major issues concerning comprehensively deepening reforms" at the close of the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee on Tuesday.  (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

Hong Kong (CNN) China was one of two countries, along with Russia, named in a 2018 Pentagon report as posing the most significant military challenge to the United States. Two years on and that challenge has only grown.Beijing’s program of rapid modernization has seen its military transformed into a true global power, capable of comfortably projecting its forces throughout the Indo-Pacific region and beyond.This year alone has seen China engage in deadly border clashes with Indian troops; China’s People’s Liberation Army aircraft have repeatedly buzzed Taiwanese and Japanese air defenses; and Chinese ships have been involved in multiple incidents in the disputed waters of the South China Sea.<img alt=”The USS Nimitz and USS Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Groups conduct dual carrier operations in the Indo-Pacific earlier this year.” -=””>

Minister warns about development of small-scale hydropower

29/10/2020    18:10 GMT+7 vietnamnet

Answering the local press on the sidelines of the National Assembly session, Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Tran Hong Ha said the principle of his ministry is ‘not to develop small-scale hydropower at any cost’.

Many experts believe that the historic floods in the central region some days ago were the results of climate change. How does the draft of the amended law on environmental protection address the issue?

Minister warns about development of small-scale hydropower

Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Tran Hong Ha

The issues related to climate change, natural disasters and floods are mentioned in many laws. The reason behind recent floods is extreme climate change. All the indicators exceed the indicators of the floods in history.

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North-South high-speed railway to be core part of national transport system

30/10/2020    07:10 GMT+7 vietnamnet

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked the Ministry of Transport to propose a feasible plan for the North-South high-speed railway, considering this the backbone of the national strategy on railway development by 2050.

North-South high-speed railway to be core part of national transport system
A train in Ninh Phuoc District, Ninh Thuan Province. — VNA/VNS Photo

The high-speed line, inter-provincial, inter-regional and urban railway networks must also be added to the strategy, he said.

He was speaking at a Government meeting on Wednesday on the development strategy for Vietnam’s railway towards 2050.

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Remarks by President Trump Announcing Normalization of Relations Between Sudan and Israel

 FOREIGN POLICY, The White House

 Issued on: October 23, 2020

Oval Office

11:34 A.M. EDT

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  (In progress) …on the phone, we have some terrific people: Chairman Abdel al-Burhan and Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok of Sudan — a beautiful part of the world; and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — I think you mostly know him.  You perhaps heard of him somewhere.  We have the very highly sophisticated press.  I think they may have heard of him, of Israel.  So I want to just congratulate all of you.

The State of Israel and the Republic of Sudan have agreed to make peace.  This is for many, many years they’ve been at odds, to put it nicely, and to normalize their relations.  This will be the third country where we’re doing this.  And we have many, many more coming.  We have — they’re coming at us hot and heavy.
In the coming weeks, they will meet to negotiate cooperation agreements.  You saw that happen with UAE and Bahrain recently in agriculture, technology, aviation, migration, and other critical areas.

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Secretary Pompeo Travels to Vietnam To Demonstrate Support for a Strong, Prosperous, and Independent Vietnam



OCTOBER 29, 2020Share

“Over the last quarter century, our two countries have built a partnership and friendship founded on shared interests, mutual respect, and people-to-people ties.  Our everyday interactions are highlighted by increasing trade and investment ties, strategic cooperation, and collaboration on humanitarian and legacy of war issues, including the solemn duty of accounting for our wartime missing.  In recent years, we have strengthened and expanded our Comprehensive Partnership, based on a shared vision of a stable and peaceful Indo-Pacific region, as well as respect for each other’s independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political systems.”

 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo, July 10, 2020

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The real winners of the US-China trade dispute


With tariffs on Chinese products high, US importers are turning to other countries. A DW analysis shows where Americans are now buying their cell phones, computers, furniture and clothing from instead.

Data visualization preview picture Trade War

Dung Trans’ business is booming: “Last year, we added a second floor to our factory. And now I’m looking at a new site four times larger than the current one.” For his company, the ongoing trade dispute between China and the United States has been a boon. And he is not alone.

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China sent fugitive’s elderly father to America to coerce him into going home, US claims

By Ben Westcott, CNN

Updated 0757 GMT (1557 HKT) October 29, 2020

doj chinese intelligence officer extradited charged sot vpx_00002526
NS Slug: OH: CHINESE INTELLIGENCE OFFICER TO FACE CHARGES  Synopsis: a Chinese spy is extradited to the U.S. after stealing technology secrets, Justice Dept. says  Keywords: CHINA SPYING AVIATION SECRETS MSS GOVERNMENT WORLD

(CNN)The Unites States has charged eight people, including six Chinese citizens, over a three-year plot to intimidate a US resident into returning to China to face criminal charges.The case is believed to be part of the ruling Communist Party’s Operation Fox Hunt, an international anti-corruption campaign targeting Chinese fugitives — often former officials or rich individuals suspected of economic crimes.The US Department of Justice said Wednesday the charges included “conspiring to act in the US as illegal agents of the People’s Republic of China.” Five people have been arrested, while three are believed to be at large in China.In 2016, the group — which includes an American-licensed private investigator — is alleged to have embarked on an illegal campaign targeting a former Chinese government official, who has lived in the US since 2010. They are accused of recording and harassing his daughter, taping a threatening note to his front door and flying his elderly father from China — allegedly against his will — in 2017 to pressure his son to return to China.The note on the target’s New Jersey home said in Chinese: “If you are willing to go back to the mainland and spend 10 years in prison, your wife and children will be all right. That’s the end of this matter!”Speaking at a press conference Wednesday, US Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers said the arrests sent a message that the US “will not tolerate this type of flagrant conduct on our shores.”close dialog

Get daily analysis on the historic 2020 US election delivered to your inbox.Sign Me UpNo ThanksBy subscribing you agree to ourprivacy policy.“Without coordination with our government, China’s repatriation squads enter the United States, surveil and locate the alleged fugitives, and deploy intimidation and other tactics to force them back into China where they would face certain imprisonment or worse following illegitimate trials,” he said.Speaking at a press conference Thursday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that Chinese law enforcement agencies “conduct foreign cooperation in strict accordance with international law, fully respect foreign laws and judicial sovereignty.””The United States ignores the basic facts and uses ulterior motives to smear China’s work in pursuit of escaped and stolen goods. China firmly opposes this. We urge the US to immediately correct its mistakes,” he said.

Operation Fox Hunt

The Chinese government launched Operation Fox Hunt in 2014 to target wealthy citizens who were accused of corruption and had fled the country with large amounts of money.Beijing authorities said at least 150 corrupt officials had fled to the US, and provided American counterparts with a list of “priority cases.”Demers said such operations — regardless of whether the targets were guilty or not — were “a clear violation of the rule of law and international norms.””Rather than work with US authorities for assistance with recognized criminal cases as responsible nations do, China resorts to extralegal means and unauthorized, often covert, law enforcement activity,” he said.FBI Director Christopher Wray said at a news conference Wednesday that in a different Operation Fox Hunt case, the Chinese government had sent an “emissary” to the target’s US-based family warning that the person should “return to China promptly or commit suicide.”Wray said that when Operation Fox Hunt targets refuse to return to China, family members in their home country “have even been arrested for leverage.””These are not the actions we would expect from a responsible nation state. Instead they’re more like something we would expect from an organized criminal syndicate,” Wray said.

Building a Climate Resilient Future for Costa Rica’s Coffee Farming Communities

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AES, PetroVietnam Gas to sign $2.8 billion LNG deal: Pompeo

AES, PetroVietnam Gas to sign $2.8 billion LNG deal: Pompeo
The logo of the multinational electric power company AES is seen at an office in Santiago, Chile June 4, 2019. Photo: Reuters

HANOI — AES Corp. will sign a deal with PetroVietnam Gas GAS.HM to develop a $2.8 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal and a power plant in Vietnam, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday.

“Vietnam has given the green light to AES Corp., a company based in Virginia, to go forward with the project,” Pompeo said at a virtual Indo-Pacific Business Forum. Tiếp tục đọc “AES, PetroVietnam Gas to sign $2.8 billion LNG deal: Pompeo”

China tightens rules on US media outlets in ‘reciprocal’ move

The Guardian

China says decision was ‘necessary’ after the US declared several more Chinese media outlets to be ‘foreign missions

The US media firms affected are the American Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Feature Story News, the Bureau of National Affairs and Minnesota Public Radio

The US media firms affected are the American Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Feature Story News, the Bureau of National Affairs and Minnesota Public Radio Photograph: Richard Vogel/APStaff and agencies

Mon 26 Oct 2020 16.42 GMT

China has tightened the rules on a number of US media outlets, in a move it said was “necessary and reciprocal” after Chinese journalists in America were hit with restrictions last week.

The world’s two largest economies, sparring over issues from trade and technology to human rights, have restricted visas for each other’s reporters, while China has expelled journalists.

After the US declared several more Chinese media outlets to be “foreign missions”, Beijing on Monday demanded that six US media groups report to the government about their staffing, finances and real estate.

The US media firms affected are the American Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Feature Story News, the Bureau of National Affairs and Minnesota Public Radio.

A foreign ministry spokesman, Zhao Lijian, said in a statement that the requirements were “legitimate and justified self-defense in every sense”.

“What the United States has done is exclusively targeting Chinese media organizations driven by the cold war mentality and ideological basis,” Zhao added.

The moves are the latest in a series of tit-for-tat measures between Beijing and Washington.

Last week the US designated a further six Chinese media organisations as propaganda outlets that answer to the state.

It was the third round of US designations of Chinese outlets as foreign missions, which requires that they report details on their US-based staff and real estate transactions to the state department.Whether Trump or Biden wins, US-China relations look set to worsenRead more

The department earlier imposed rules on nine outlets including the official Xinhua news agency and China Global Television Network.

China has denounced the regulations and retaliated by expelling US citizens who work for major news organisations, including the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal.

In May the US shortened the visa for Chinese journalists in America to 90 days, and last month the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China said Beijing was no longer renewing press credentials for US media employees in the country.

Since you’re here …



This week, the U.S. government for the first time imposed economic penalties on Chinese businesses for their behavior in the South China Sea. The Commerce Department placed 24 Chinese companies on the Entity List. The list restricts exports of certain goods to companies and individuals that threaten U.S. national security or foreign policy priorities. According to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the 24 companies (22 of which are state-owned enterprises) were selected because they “played a significant role” in China’s construction of artificial bases in the Spratly Islands. The State Department, meanwhile, announced that it would not issue visas to Chinese nationals “responsible for, or complicit in, either the large-scale reclamation, construction, or militarization of disputed outposts in the South China Sea, or the PRC’s use of coercion against Southeast Asian claimants to inhibit their access to offshore resources.”