That’s the conclusion of Merrick “Mac” Carey, a former senior aide to the US Congress, who is now the executive director of Lexington Academy, a public policy advisory organization in Arlington, Virginia, USA.
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, Mr. Carey said, China’s rise as a global economic power and regional military power, is one of the fastest rise in history. China has grown faster than the United States for four consecutive decades. They built an industrial and technological foundation to rapidly expand their military, achieve world-class space satellite capabilities and create their own version of GPS. China’s mercantilism has taken over all sectors of other economies, including in the US economy. The US wants China to be a counterweight to the Soviet Union and then actively helps China to get rich, with the expectation that Western-style institutional changes will take place in the country.
But things are changing. China’s population is aging at an unprecedented rate and scale in history. The country is expected to lose 400 million people of working age this century, and the workforce is now declining. The gender imbalance is at 18% of the population. China’s birth rate never recovered when the “one child” policy lasted for decades. India is likely to overtake China as the world’s most populous country in this decade. China has just pulled back its economic growth target for the first time in decades.
China is bullying Korean and Japanese companies. Samsung and Sony are adjusting their operations in China. Apple is a backward one, but is planning to move 20% of its supply chain in China to India. India banned 59 Chinese mobile apps after a recent border clash. Huawei is on the Trump administration’s blacklist and the loss of Google apps on smartphones has ruined sales outside China of China’s giant telecommunications equipment giant. He announced his plan to completely eliminate Huawei from Britain’s telecommunications infrastructure by 2023.
China’s export markets are frustrated and angry with China over coronavirus. The European market accounts for 16% of China’s exports, and is now an economic and financial “scrap iron”. The US market accounts for 19%, President Donald Trump’s attitude towards China is very clear, and that view is gaining congressional support. China’s exports to the United States are declining rapidly, dropping by 17% from summer 2018 to January 2020. This is further aggravated by coronavirus. No one thought that this “economic divorce” could happen so quickly. China’s global foreign direct investment also dropped from $ 260 billion in 2017 to $ 125 billion in 2019. Why should China cool down its Belt and Road Initiative infrastructure projects?
Militarily, China’s geographical situation can only be described as being constrained and vulnerable. China is almost surrounded by unfriendly nations. They have only one ally, North Korea, but only a “customer” country (ie less developed and dependent on China-PV). Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Australia and India are cold or even hostile to China. Most of these are allies or friendly with the US. Many countries are equipped with US high-tech weapons.
To truly control the South China Sea, China will need to control both Subic Bay and Cam Ranh Bay. China has no percentage of that. The Philippines has just changed, from withdrawing, now wants to maintain a military agreement with the US. The maritime borders of every nation in the South China Sea are flagrantly violated by China’s “Nine-dash Line” claims. This is not the way to make friends. Meanwhile, the US-India courtship is going well.
As relations between Canberra and Beijing worsen, skepticism about China and concerns about drought and water shortages sparked suggestions that China is buying Australia’s water resources with the intention of bad.