This column has drawn attention to the West’s policy of “decoupling” from China – a policy of eating away at major aspects of China’s foreign trade for the purpose of hurting China’s economy in the hope that China “would come to heel” and cease to be a challenge to hitherto Western power. It is not working.
Yesterday China and Japan agreed to resume coronavirus-hit business travel and to press ahead with multilateral trade deals. This followed a visit to Tokyo of China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi where he met incoming Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga.
Differences between China and Japan over the Senkaku islands, China’s ban on Japanese beef and China policy in HK were discussed but the focus was on a stable bilateral relationship. Mr Wang and Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi both pledged fast progress on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership trade pact recently signed by 15 Asia-Pacific nations earlier this month.
The message? Co-operation not De-coupling is the priority.