For both Washington and Beijing, the patient rebuilding of a rules-based order, not the assertion of unilateral advantage by either, remains the only credible path forward. Without such efforts, the Asia-Pacific region and the world will inevitably move toward open-ended rivalry—or worse.
On July 29, the John L. Thornton China Center hosted a public event to explore the costs, benefits, and impacts of sub-national exchanges between the United States and China. James Fallows led a keynote conversation with Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Former Missouri Governor Bob Holden, and then a high-level panel of experts and practitioners dove deeper into the subject.
Presidents Trump and Xi met on June 29, on the margins of the G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan, continuing the practice of holding leader-level meetings at multilateral events whenever both the U.S. and Chinese leaders are present. Although official readouts have been vague, a few early takeaways from the meeting were visible.
Li Peng's legacy revisited after his recent passing. In a New York Times obituary for Li Peng, who died earlier this month, Cheng Li points out the former Chinese prime minister's role in one of China's most ambitious—and, at the time, controversial—infrastructure projects: "Without Li Peng’s advocacy, the Three Gorges Dam might never have been built."
Hong Kong protests trigger alarms for Xi Jinping. The ongoing protests in Hong Kong, which began in opposition to a bill that would facilitate extraditions to Mainland China but have grown to encompass broader complaints, are surely holding the close attention of President Xi Jinping. In an interview, Ryan Hass told The New York Times that the lessons of the Arab Spring are "seared into [Xi's] brain."
Brookings discussion explores role of technology in U.S.-China trade war. During a recent public event, Cheng Li explained how the impact of "decoupling" between the U.S. and Chinese economies has already started to show: "There was almost zero mutual investment in the tech sector between the United States and China last year," Li pointed out. The event was also reported on by China Review (in Chinese).
About The China CenteR
The John L. Thornton China Center develops timely, independent analysis and policy recommendations to help U.S. and Chinese leaders address key long-term challenges, both in terms of U.S.-China relations and China's internal development.