China, US trade deal crucial

January 12, 2019

With fiascoes coming up on all fronts, Donald Trump made a near suicidal move in extreme anxiety by sending American naval ships to the South China Sea precariously close to the Xisha Island chain called Paracel by Beijing’s antagonists, in a battle of nerves, despite the fact that the US and China were holding vice- ministerial level trade talks in Beijing. Inside the US, while the idealistic US president, Donald Trump, has smeared himself into a corner through his hasty decision of government shutdown in a pointless attempt to compel the Congress to yield to his impulsive demand of funding the building of a wall on the Mexican border, on the international scene he is trying to flex his over-inflated muscles. The Chinese, not like the parvenu Americans, have a culture and statecraft dating at least two millennium, and they know how to checkmate their cowboy adversaries. After sending aircraft and warships to warn off the meddlesome Americans, Beijing launched a strong protest with Washington, pointing out with diplomatic civility that one wrong move or an accident might kindle a war that will without doubt drag on to the North American mainland before it reaches mainland China. Meanwhile, regardless of the strategic location of South China Sea and its extensive marine and hydrocarbon resources which the countries on its rim can peacefully share, if the intrusive Americans stay out, the trade talks in Beijing are having a positive impact on the stock markets of east and southeast Asia, right up to Australia, all of whom are tired of the trade war started by Donald Trump. The US team led by Deputy Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish has had positive and constructive discussions with their Chinese counterparts. It is worth-mentioning that the world’s two largest economies imposed a series of punitive tariffs on each other’s goods last year, sparking concerns over a global economic slowdown. If the US has put tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods and has threatened duties on double that value of products, China has responded with tariffs on $110 billion in US goods, targeting politically significant industries such as agriculture. As a result of the US-China talks, stocks in Asia gained considerably. This is a constructive tendency that should be permitted to take its course; otherwise the world economy will suffer. It remains to be seen whether Donald Trump and his team will be able to arrive at a deal with China, or will thrust the region and the world to the edge of the precipice by resorting to misadventures like the American naval intrusion in Chinese territorial waters, which might stimulus a Armageddon battle taking into account the military power of the two sides.

 

US team led by Deputy Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish has had positive and constructive discussions with their Chinese counterparts.