Published: 10:33, July 8, 2022 | Updated: 10:33, July 8, 2022
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Washington's trade terrorism seeks to destroy global rules-based system
By China Daily

There have been optimistic anticipations that the White House may soon announce the removal of at least some punitive tariffs imposed on Chinese goods by the previous administration.

Well-wishers for relations between the two countries believe that might offer an opportunity for some easing of the tensions built up over the past few years.

Responding to a question about Washington politicians advocating for applying the United States approach to Russia to China to contain its technological and military advancement, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman accused Washington of "technological terrorism". That gives a snapshot of how Beijing views the way the country is being treated and its opinion of some in Washington's strategic circles.

After all, as Beijing has repeatedly stressed a bilateral relationship stands as an organic whole, where the two parties put differences aside and concentrate solely on what is good to both. For China and the US to get along, therefore, they should shelve their differences over values and focus on the economy and trade.

The Donald Trump administration turned that focus on its head by launching a trade war, which the Biden administration inherited, and intensified, defining China as a "strategic competitor".

Still, Beijing has remained steadfast in its optimism, believing that in the face of the growing evidence that it is following the track of an overturned cart as the saying goes, Washington will come to its senses.

"Decoupling", as some in Washington propose, is unfeasible. Even if it was attainable, it would be unrewarding.

Beijing envisions a relationship that is mutually beneficial and believes such a relationship is achievable if both sides work together to forge it.

The Biden administration, however, is intent on playing a zero-sum game, confronting and suppressing China wherever possible.

Its attempts to stop ASML Holding NV and Nikon Corp from selling key chipmaking equipment to China, for one, is its latest reckless violation of its own claimed commitment to free trade and international trade rules. In the meantime, there are reports about Washington trying to further restrict bilateral exchanges even on non-governmental levels, in the name of staving off Chinese "influence operations".

Those who seek to block the way of others will only end up blocking their own way. By constantly politicizing and weaponizing economic and trade issues, Washington is only demonstrating to other countries the risks of technological dependence on the US, spurring them to look elsewhere.

There are plenty of divergences and misgivings to be straightened out between Beijing and Washington. But the idea of reducing the bilateral relationship into one that one-sidedly serves the US is unrealistic.