The accusation of “economic coercion” leveled against China by the United States is actually another testament to U.S. coercive diplomacy. Behind the word game is the U.S. evil intention and perpetual practice of stigmatizing others before inflicting economic and technological suppression on them, so as to maintain its hegemonic interests.
At a hearing of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in July, Under Secretary of State Jose Fernandez alleged that China is currently the biggest economic competitor of the United States and a prolific user of “economic coercion.”
The accusation is simply false. Believing that peace, development and win-win cooperation are the unstoppable trends of the times, China has never used, and will never use, so-called “economic coercion” in pursuing its own development.
Rather, China has made great efforts over the years to promote common development through bilateral or multilateral mechanisms.
Through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), China has signed cooperation documents with more than 150 countries and over 30 international organizations over the past decade, based on the principles of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits. The BRI has contributed to economic development, job creation and improvement of people’s livelihood in these countries.
Over the past decade, China has established 21 free trade zones across the country, an important means to facilitate trade and carry out high-level opening up. The full implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a mega free trade agreement signed by 15 members including China, is of great significance in facilitating regional economic and trade development.
In its international economic cooperation efforts and initiatives, China has never attached any political condition or sought any political self-interest, nor has China imposed economic sanctions or pursued suppression of others.
Obsessed with hegemony, unilateralism and protectionism, the United States, however, does not conceal its selfish concept of “America First.”
In terms of coercive diplomacy, the United States is not only the instigator, but also a veritable abuser and undoubtedly the only superpower of sanctions. With a very disgraceful “dark history” in coercive diplomacy, the United States has made this practice a standard instrument in its foreign policy toolbox.
Figures show a more than nine-fold increase in sanctions imposed by the United States from 2000 to 2021. To date, the United States has imposed economic sanctions on nearly 40 countries, which have affected almost half of the global population and caused severe humanitarian disasters.
The United States has imposed a tech blockade against China in the semiconductor sector, and used state power to suppress China’s high-tech enterprises.
Economic coercion by the United States has not only undermined global supply chains and industrial chains, but also raised regional and even global production costs and hindered the process of regional economic integration. This is a blatant violation of the principle of free and fair trade.
Despite this suppression by the United States, China’s efforts to expand its circle of friends will never stop.
The country will remain committed to its fundamental national policy of opening up to the outside world, uphold a mutually beneficial strategy in this course, and continue to create new opportunities for the world through its own development.