National Security

China May Be Coming Around on Trade, Finally

It is no surprise the Trump administration has taken such a tough stance with the People's Republic of China

Recent statements from Beijing are providing the most hopeful indications yet that China may finally be coming around on trade.

Data released last week by the U.S. Department of Commerce indicated that Chinese goods exports to the U.S. over the past six months declined 12.8 percent compared to the same period of 2018, driving the trade surplus down 10 percent.

Taken at an annual rate, China’s trade surplus with the U.S. in the January-April interval would be 23.5 percent below China’s surplus for all of last year.

Trade surplus was, of course, the major factor that triggered the one-year-plus trade war between China and the United States.

Related: Tariffs Are a Necessary Response to China’s Intransigence

Looking at the data, it is no surprise why the Trump administration has taken such a tough stance on trade with the People’s Republic of China.

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China has accumulated nearly a trillion dollars of U.S. trade surpluses on President Donald Trump’s watch.

But in truth, this is nothing new.

The trade imbalance has been in the tens of billions of dollars for years.

But, finally, as the stats show, China seems to be showing a readiness to keep its sales in American markets on a steep and steady path.

Another meeting between Trump and Xi is expected at the upcoming G-20 summit in Japan.

Beyond just the raw numbers, however, the strongest indication China may finally be coming around on trade came from the country’s premier himself.

Last Friday, Chinese President Xi Jinping (shown above right) delivered the following remarks at an international economic forum in Russia: “It’s hard to imagine a complete break of the United States from China or of China from the United States. We are not interested in this, and our American partners are not interested in this. President Trump is my friend and I am convinced he is also not interested in this.”

Another meeting between Trump and Xi is expected at the upcoming G-20 summit in Japan.

One can be hopeful that this time around, their rendezvous will have a more friendly tone.

Samuel Siskind studied intelligence research at the American Military University in West Virginia. He served as a squad commander in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) Corp of Combat Engineers, in the corps’ ground battalions, and later in its Intelligence Wing at regional and divisional stations. For the past five years, he’s worked as a consultant and researcher on physical and information security issues for private and governmental institutions, in the U.S., Africa, India, and Israel. He currently lives in Jerusalem. This OpsLens piece is used by permission.

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