On June 7, 2023, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Xie Feng delivered a keynote speech at the welcome event hosted by the U.S.-China Business Council. He underscored that if “de-risking” is used as a cover for “de-coupling”, it will hammer in more nails for China-U.S. relationship.
Ambassador Xie said that recently, the U.S. side has expressed its non-intention to decouple with China. But some are now using another word, “de-risking”. To some Chinese, the two mean no difference. They liken this to putting the same wine in a different bottle. They ask, what and where are the risks? And how will such “de-risking” be realized? They worry that “de-risking” may be just another name for “decoupling”. Xie quoted the inscription at the gate of the Commerce Research Library that reads, “Cultivate peace and commerce with all.” The U.S. used to champion globalization and free trade, encouraging others to open their doors and become part of the world economy. Back-pedaling and turning inward would not serve anyone’s interests.
Ambassador Xie noted that every country has national security to take care of. But national security is not an excuse for protectionism. If national security is used as a hammer, then everything will look like a nail. One country’s security cannot be built on the insecurity of others. Nor can a country keep its industrial chains stable if those of the world are not. Over 1,300 Chinese entities are put on U.S. lists of control and sanctions. Tariff is imposed. Export is controlled, and investment screened. A trade war had barely ended, when an industrial war and a technological war started. “But will these measures truly make America more secure? Are they really in America’s interest?” he asked.