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Since the China-U.S. trade friction began, some opinions have voiced that China should make concessions if it wants to buy itself more time for development. This belief is ridiculous and naïve.
The trade tensions between the two countries are not as simple as they look, and are not even all about the trade itself. Data shows that the U.S. benefited handsomely from the bilateral trade, while China profited from it at the cost of human resources and the environment. What is the root cause of today’s trade dispute? The reason lies in the fact that the U.S. wants to force China to compromise on issues relating to its core interests. Core interests refer to China’s innovation-oriented development, which means achieving its economic growth using high-tech innovation instead of cheap labor and without sacrificing environmental resources.
Against this backdrop, will China earn the time for development by compromising? The answer is no. Oregon, a state on the West Coast of the U.S., is a paradigm of environmental protection. The state achieved this by transporting 90% of its rubbish to China. The U.S. hasn’t given China an alternative. The only thing it wants is to force China to give up its dignity and sovereignty and to achieve development only by sacrificing its resources and environment.
Therefore, lying behind the trade feud is America’s intention to stifle China’s development. The U.S. wants to be a permanent leader in the world, and there is no way for China to avoid the “storm” through compromise.
History proves that compromise only leads to further dilemmas. During previous trade tensions between the U.S. and Japan, Japan made concessions. As a result, its political stability and economic development were adversely affected, with structural reform being suspended and high-tech companies being severely damaged.
China, with a population of 14 billion, is the world’s largest manufacturing base. Industrial upgrading and high-tech innovation are crucial to China’s economic development. China needs to leave more resources to its descendants by protecting the environment and reaping the dividends of further opening up. These are the core interests of China, and it will never give them up.
The only way for a country to win a war is through development, not compromise. To achieve development, China will open its door wider to the world and fight to the end.
For those who delude themselves that China will make concessions, it’s time to face reality.