Not being predictable has been US-president Donald Trump’s trademark on foreign policy. When it comes to China, economist Arthur Kroeber prefers to phrase it in another way. “US policy towards China in both security and economic terms remains confused and directionless,” he says in the South China Morning Post.

The South China Morning Post:

“Three conclusions dribbled out from (the Trump-Xi) meeting, said Arthur Kroeber, co-founder of the China-focused research service Dragonomics in Beijing, wrote in a note on Monday.

First, the risk of a damaging trade war between the two countries has evaporated. Second, the urgent North Korea problem has pushed other elements of the strategic rivalry into the background; but fundamentally the US has no new useful ideas on that and the uneasy status quo will likely persist.

And third, Trump’s economic policy toward China remains tangled among conflicting aims which include protectionist deficit-reduction, knocking down China’s barriers to investment, and increase China’s investment in the States, and unable to prioritise any of them, he added.

“From China’s perspective, this is fine: it can offer the US a few concessions on trade and investment that costs it little, and get on with the task of expanding its economic and political influence in Asia,” Kroeber said.

“But all in all, US policy towards China in both security and economic terms remains confused and directionless.

More in the South China Morning Post.

Arthur Kroeber  is a speaker at the China Speakers’ Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch or fill in our speakers’ request form.

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