US president Trump might be doing his best to upset China in every possible way, but US-China relations are no longer top priority for either country, says political analyst Victor Shih at NBC News. “Fundamentally the big problem on both sides is that you now have leadership which no longer considers having good bilateral relationships as a highest priority,”

2019 was a good year for most of China’s industries, the corona virus black-lash might be rough for some industries, says leading economist Arthur Kroeber in the Financial Times. Substantial double-digit declines in many production-side economic indicators might be expected over the first three months of the year,” he added.

While messages from the coronavirus are mixed, to put it mildly, the current economic crash course might only be over by April/May, in the most optimistic scenario. Numbers of infected people and deaths by COVID-19 still vary to much to support any scenario at this stage, while it is also unclear whether the rest of the world can contain the virus.

Footage from metro subways still show empty carriages, as the central government tries to encouraged migrant workers to return to their workplaces, local governments – including the big cities –  advise returning migrants to put themselves in a social quarantine for two weeks to be sure they do not carry the virus. The dilemma is obvious: different government make different choices when it come to prevent major economic damage or keeping their cities save from the virus. 

Fighting the Covid-19 virus and saving the economy might not go very well together, says political analyst Victor Shih in Al Jazeera. While there is very little international supply chains can do at this stage, as Chinese governments make decisions, says Victor Shih, the message for the long run is: diversify.

By trying to take on China alone on trade, the US failed to achieve real results in its first trade deal, says trade-veteran Harry Broadman to Bloomberg. China did not adhere to the multilateral trade deal it closed by joining the WTO, but Donald Trump failed to address the issues related to that.

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.

Analysts watched the ‘announcement’ of a first trade deal between China and the US with amazement. Former US trade negotiator Harry Broadman points out that typically you wait till you have something in writing, in both languages, to avoid hiccups before the signing, he explains to Reuters.

After a first symbolic truce, the world should brace for the next phase in the trade war between China and the US, warns leading economist Arthur Kroeber, according to Barron’s. China has stalled its economic reforms and mechanisms to contain the US power fail, and the technology war is likely to resume, he stresses.