Tensions between Canada and China worsen as China detains another Canadian, this time on dubious drug allegations. China has now arrested 3 Canadians in total and sentenced another to death for drug trafficking.
China’s economic growth slows to 6.2%, the slowest in nearly 30 years. While Trump takes credit, the slowdown is likely due to China’s development. Economic growth is expected to slow as economies get stronger.
China’s subtle influence and espionage campaign deepens in Europe. Students living abroad are taught to “turn patriotic feelings into patriotic deeds … tightly tie your own ideals to the destiny of the motherland!”
China is continuing to pump millions of dollars of loans and grants into the country of Tonga. Tonga’s debts to China now have reached $108M, or the equivalent of 25% of Tonga’s GDP. While it is not clear what China wants in the South Pacific, it may be eyeing Tonga as a foothold to project power to the West.
Despite Huawei being placed on the U.S. export blacklist, the U.S. will allow some U.S. firms to sell to Huawei where there is not a threat to national security. It is not clear which parts will be allowed to be sold.
Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam is declaring the controversial extradition bill “dead”. This declaration comes after weeks of protests saw millions of Hongkongers take to the streets to protest the bill which would have allowed for extraditions to mainland China.
Huawei staffers have been exposed for working with the Chinese military on several research projects, according to a Bloomberg News investigation. It’s one of the few times that the company, which has been accused by the U.S. of working with Chinese intelligence, has been proven to have collaborated with China’s armed forces.
The United States hopes to re-launch trade talks with China after President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping meet in Japan on Saturday, but Washington will not accept any conditions around the U.S. use of tariffs in the dispute, a senior administration official said on Tuesday.
Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived in North Korea for a historic visit Thursday, becoming the first Chinese leader to travel to the country in 14 years. His two-day summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un comes days before Xi is scheduled to meet with President Trump during a Group of 20 summit in Japan, leading some experts to interpret the Pyongyang trip as a means to strengthen China’s hand in its trade war with Washington.
Could a trade agreement with China be on the horizon? Maybe. President Trump said he and Chinese President Xi Jinping will have an “extended meeting” next week at the G-20 summit in Japan. Trump tweeted that he and Xi “had a very good telephone conversation,” and that “our respective teams will begin talks prior to our meeting.” Xi has said he hopes the U.S. treats Chinese companies “fairly”—possibly a reference to the U.S. ban of telecommunications giant Huawei over national security concerns.
China on Tuesday warned against opening a “Pandora’s box” in the Middle East after the United States announced the deployment of 1,000 additional troops to the region amid escalating tensions with Iran. Foreign minister Wang Yi also urged Tehran to not abandon the nuclear agreement “so easily” after Iran said it would exceed its uranium stockpile limit if world powers fail to fulfil their commitments under the agreement in 10 days.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam on Tuesday signaled the end of a controversial extradition bill that she promoted and then postponed after some of the most violent protests since the former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997. In a closely watched press conference, Lam apologized for the turmoil but refused to say the bill would be “withdrawn,” only that it wouldn’t be re-introduced during her time in office if public fears persist.
Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit North Korea for two days from Thursday, state media in both countries reported on Monday, making him the first Chinese leader to visit in 14 years. Neighboring China is reclusive North Korea’s only major ally, and the visit comes amid renewed tensions between the United States and North Korea over efforts to persuade Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons.
Huawei’s American chip suppliers, including Qualcomm and Intel, are quietly pressing the U.S. government to ease its ban on sales to the Chinese tech giant, even as Huawei itself avoids typical government lobbying. Chip makers argue that Huawei units selling products such as smartphones and computer servers use commonly available parts and are unlikely to present the same security concerns as the Chinese technology firm’s 5G networking gear.
Cracks appeared to emerge on Friday in the support base for a proposed Hong Kong law that would allow extraditions to China as opponents of the bill vowed further demonstrations after hundreds of thousands took to the streets this week. Opposition to the bill on Sunday triggered the former British colony’s biggest political demonstration since its return to Chinese rule in 1997 under a “one country, two systems” deal.
With under three weeks to go before proposed talks between the Chinese and U.S. leaders, expectations for progress toward ending the trade war are low and sources say there has been little preparation for a meeting even as the health of the world economy is at stake.
Mass protests in Hong Kong turned ugly on Wednesday after police hit marchers with tear gas and pepper spray. The violent scenes came after the government postponed a debate over an extradition bill after thousands of demonstrators blocked entry to government headquarters to protest the proposed legislation.
Unable to fathom natural public protest, China is blaming the U.S. for interference. China is saying that U.S. opposition to Hong Kong’s extradition bill is interfering in its internal affairs.
Shao Yang, Huawei’s chief strategist, suggested that the company would have become the number one smart phone producer in the world this year if it was not for “unexpected” circumstances. It is believed that Yang is referring to U.S. action taken against Huawei, including the placement of Huawei on the U.S. exports blacklist and banning its sale in the very lucrative, U.S. market.
Foxconn, an electronics industry company, is making it clear that should the trade war between the U.S. and China worsen, forcing Apple to move its supply chain out of China, Foxconn is large enough to fill in and help Apple.
“[The protestors] understand very clearly that the measure making its way through the local legislature, where pro-Beijing deputies hold sway, has nothing to do with bringing murderers to justice, and everything to do with breaking down the firewall between Hong Kong’s rule of law and mainland China’s thoroughly politicized judicial system. They understand that the legislation represents a further encroachment by Beijing into the ‘high degree of autonomy’ Hong Kong was promised when Britain returned the territory to Chinese sovereignty in 1997.”
While protests are nothing new in Hong Kong, the scale of the current outcry is unusual, with hundreds of thousands protesting a new extradition law on Sunday in what may have been the largest marches since the city’s handover to Chinese rule.
In true Trump tantrum fashion, President Trump is demanding that Chinese President Xi meet with him at the upcoming G-20 summit to talk trade. If he refuses, Trump threatened to impose more tariffs on Chinese imports.
Despite protests in Hong Kong reaching more than 1 million people strong, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam says that a bill that would allow for extradition to China’s mainland will proceed. China’s legal system is very different from that of Hong Kong, and Hongkongers fear an abuse of the extradition process.
The leader of Hong Kong’s government has said she remains determined to pass a proposed extradition law despite a huge protest march against the legislation on Sunday that drew hundreds of thousands of people. Opponents of the law say it is being pushed by the Chinese government, and fear that Beijing will use it to extradite activists, dissidents and other political opponents.
Huawei smartphones and devices will no longer come with Facebook apps, like Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp pre-installed. Users will be able to download the apps themselves, but this move by Facebook is the latest move by Silicon Valley to move away from Huawei.
U.S. retaliation for Russia’s interference efforts around the world and Trump’s trade war with China have left both Russia and China quite upset with the U.S. While in Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping, both reaffirmed their commitment to each other’s countries and called out the United States’ practice of “economic raiding”.
Trump’s trade war with China is doing little to bring jobs back to the U.S., but it is doing a lot for China’s neighbors. U.S. imports from Vietnam, Taiwan, and South Korea have all increased by 38 percent, 22 percent, and 17 percent respectively. Amid the trade war U.S. imports from China have dropped by 12 percent.
Australia is pointing the finger at China for a massive hack of the Australian National University. Hackers obtained 19 years worth of personal information of students and staff. Experts speculate that the information could be used by China to try to find Australians to “groom” before they move into Australian public service.
Turab Lookman, a theoretical physicist and former scientist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, was arrested on charges related to lying about his contacts with the Thousand Talents Plan, a Chinese government program. The National Laboratory is a main target for infiltration for hostile foreign nations.
Google executives reportedly told government officials that they risk compromising U.S. national security if they push ahead with strict export restrictions on Huawei, and have asked to be exempted from restrictions on trade with the company. Google fears it would not be allowed to update its Android operating system on Huawei smartphones under the ban, meaning the Chinese company would develop its own version of the software which could be more susceptible to hacking.
Despite bipartisan criticism over Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen and its role in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the White House has sought an even closer relationship with the Saudis. Now, lawmakers have learned that the Trump administration did not initially disclose to key members of Congress its knowledge that the Saudis have expanded their missile arsenal with help from China. And they’re not too happy about it.
Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested on a U.S. warrant in Vancouver, will fight extradition to the U.S. in an extradition hearing set for January 2020. She was arrested on charges relating to Huawei’s work with Iran.
As Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin meet in Russia, Huawei and Russia’s mobile phone operator MTS have come to an agreement for Huawei to build Russia’s 5G network.
An informal notification of the proposed sale has been sent to the U.S. Congress, and includes 108 General Dynamics Corp M1A2 Abrams tanks worth around $2 billion as well as anti-tank and anti-aircraft munitions. A spokesman for the State Department said the U.S. government does not comment on or confirm potential or pending arms sales, but Taiwan’s Defense Ministry confirmed it had requested those weapons and that the request was proceeding normally.
U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to hit China with tariffs on “at least” another $300 billion worth of Chinese goods but said he thought both China and Mexico wanted to make deals in their trade disputes with the United States. While Trump said on Thursday that talks with China were ongoing, no face-to-face meetings have been held since May 10.
“The larger issue is that Donald Trump’s unpredictably incendiary foreign policy sits uneasily with the principles of FOIP (‘free and open Indo-Pacific’). Tensions with Iran are pulling America’s attention back to the Middle East. The compulsive resort to tariffs undercuts a rules-based trading order. Mr. Trump’s lack of interest in human rights hardly furthers freedom. And to many in Asia, America’s war on Huawei or its sanctions against buyers of Russian arms or Iranian oil look an awful lot like China’s ‘toolkit of coercion,’ as Mr. Shanahan put it.”
IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde warned that if the trade war between the U.S. and China continues, the global GDP will experience a loss of $455B in 2020. Lagarde continued saying, “These are self-inflicted wounds that must be avoided…”
China successfully launched a rocket into space from a mobile platform. The rocket contained several satellites. China now joins the U.S. and Russia as the only countries to achieve rocket launches from mobile platforms.