President Xi Jinping decided to stay away from the signing ceremony, and that was an ominous sign, writes political analyst Shirley Ze Yu in the South China Morning Post. China will stick to the trade deal, as long as the country’s economic stability is not under threat, she argues.
Shirley Ze Yu:
The sentiment within China towards the partial trade deal is cold. The contrast between how much the US is talking up the trade deal and how far China has moved beyond it is striking.
Last year, Trump wanted only a “good deal” or no deal at all. In October, he yielded to China’s two-track proposal to the trade negotiations, which draws a line between negotiations on trade and foreign affairs. China’s pragmatic approach saw the US’ principled insistence on addressing structural issues disintegrate.
“The highest art of war is to win without fighting,” says The Art of War. China won’t confront the US or increase hostilities. It will simply chart its course towards economic dominance.