Nov 18, 2019

The threat of a U.S.-China "tech Cold War"

Ian Bremmer, president and founder of Eurasia Group, warned at the consulting firm's annual GZERO Summit in Tokyo Monday that a rising "tech Cold War" between China and the West poses "the greatest threat to globalization since the end of World War II."

What he's saying: "Beijing is building a separate system of Chinese technology — its own standards, infrastructure, and supply chains — to compete with the West," Bremmer said. "Make no mistake: This is the single most consequential geopolitical decision taken in the last three decades."

Bremmer says these "parallel technology systems" are more worrisome than China's military threat, which is "smaller than many in Washington believe":

China has even less interest in going to war with the U.S. than the U.S. has in going to war with China. China is a regional, but not a global, military power. ...
The greatest source of U.S.-China conflict comes from technology. Here, China is, today, a true superpower. Here, the U.S. does have an interest in seeing China fail, because China's technological development poses a foundational challenge to the values on which global stability and prosperity depend.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

House passes sanctions bill on China for mass detention of Uighur Muslims

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The House overwhelmingly passed a bill on Tuesday that would push for sanctions against China over its mass detention of Uighur Muslims. The bill would also restrict U.S. technology and AI exports to China that could be used to facilitate detentions.

Driving the news: President Trump signed a bill to reaffirm U.S. support for Hong Kong's autonomy last week in the face of massive pro-democracy protests. In the midst of critical trade talks, China warned that it would take retaliatory measures over the Hong Kong bill if it became law.

Go deeperArrowDec 4, 2019

The trade war is kind of working

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

U.S. manufacturers and small businesses have been hit hard by the trade war, but recent data shows that China is really suffering.

Driving the news: China's total exports fell for the 12th straight month in November, dropping 1.1% from a year ago, and exports to the U.S. have fallen more than 20%, according to China’s customs administration.

U.S. and China reach "phase one" trade deal to avert December tariffs

Photo: Artyom Ivanov/TASS via Getty Images

The U.S. and China agreed to a "phase one" trade deal on Friday, which President Trump touted in a series of tweets.

The state of play: The deal averts a new round of tariffs scheduled to go into effect on Dec. 15, and a Chinese official said that the U.S. would reduce its tariffs on Chinese goods in stages, per Bloomberg. The deal includes an agreement from China to increase imports from the U.S. and purchase agricultural goods.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Dec 13, 2019