It is now explicit that geopolitical competition is part of US-China relations and that it has given rise to the threat that this bilateral relationship could further divide the globe by paving the way for another competitive era. Tensions between the two giants, the United States and China, have escalated under former President Donald Trump, who has used tariffs and sanctions in an attempt to address long-standing complaints about China’s unfair practices. The geopolitical game is also intensifying under the 46th President of the United States, Joe Biden.
Following the G7 summit, leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) said China poses a risk to global security at their annual summit in Brussels. The traditionally Russian-centric military alliance first turned to China, asserting the need to respond to Beijing’s growing power. The final communiqué, signed by the leaders of the 30-member alliance, asserts that “China’s stated ambitions and assertive behavior present systemic challenges to the rules-based international order.” NATO’s new 2030 strategy requires alliance member states to devote more resources to managing China’s growing global influence. In response, China has warned NATO that it will not remain inactive in the face of challenges. A statement released on the website of the Chinese Mission to the European Union a few days ago said Beijing was not posing a “systemic challenge” to any country and added that NATO should not exaggerate military might. from China.
Meanwhile, at the three-day Group of Seven (G7) summit, leaders of wealthy democracies criticized Beijing over human rights in its Xinjiang region, called on Hong Kong to retain a high degree of autonomy. and demanded a full investigation into the origins of the coronavirus in China. The G7 statement said, “With regard to China and competition in the global economy, we will continue to consult on collective approaches to challenge non-market policies and practices that undermine the fair and transparent functioning of the Mondial economy”. In response, the Chinese Embassy in the UK accused the G7 of “baseless accusations”. “Stop slandering China, stop meddling in China’s internal affairs and stop harming China’s interests,” a spokesperson said Monday.
China’s technological boom has raised concerns in the United States about the possibility of China dominating the technologies of the future. Therefore, the Biden administration has increased the intensity of competition in the tech arena by banning or blacklisting Chinese companies and banning American people and companies from doing business with such companies. It includes, the extension of 59 Chinese companies on the Trump-era blacklist, including communications giant Huawei by presidential decree, seven Chinese supercomputer entities declaring that their activities are contrary to national security or the interests of US foreign policy, the US Federal Communications Commission, in March, named five Chinese technology companies, including Huawei, ZTE, Hytera Communications, Hikvision and Dahua, as an “unacceptable risk” to national security.
The Strategic Competition Law of 2021 has been amended to provide more aid to Africa and Latin America to counter China’s financial aid to those countries, provide more funding to US tech industries and strengthen the US International Development Finance Corp to compete with the Development Bank of China, which was instrumental in signing the Beijing Belt and Road Initiative.
The sanctions game against China was also started by the West and its allies. The EU has sanctioned four Chinese individuals, including a senior security director, for alleged human rights violations in Xinjiang. Similar measures have been followed by the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. The United States on the same day sanctioned two Chinese government officials for what they called “serious” human rights violations against ethnic minorities in Xinjiang.
In retaliation, China recently, in June 2021, passed a new law to counter US and European sanctions. The National People’s Congress (NPC) approved the Law on Anti-Foreign Sanctions. The new law provides a legal basis for China to counter US and EU sanctions on trade, technology, Hong Kong and Xinjiang. According to her, people or entities involved in the development or implementation of discriminatory measures against Chinese citizens or entities could be placed on an anti-sanctions list. Those on the list may be refused entry to China or be deported from the country. Their assets in China can be seized, detained or frozen.
Through a narrow lens, the game of searching for a US military base in Pakistan shrouded in the fight against the Afghan Taliban is more China-centric. US authorities demanded access to Pakistan’s military base during the Doha peace process in Afghanistan, but Islamabad has remained elusive. Military strategists know full well that this will not benefit Pakistan in the long run. Pakistan cannot risk annoying China, which has become Pakistan’s main arms supplier and financier since 2016, when US-Pakistan military cooperation ended. The presence of foreign troops in the region would not only worry Beijing, but Tehran and Moscow would also get angry. If Pakistan allows US military bases in the country, China will interpret it as an extension of the US Indo-Pacific strategy, which it sees as a containment strategy for China and could push back the Sino-Pakistani economic corridor. (CPEC) and remove other installations. including soft loans, military cooperation and diplomatic support.