GOOD MORNING FROM LONDON #230 25 MAY 2021
UK’s new aircraft carrier will commence its maiden 8-month voyage with military exercises in S China Sea just as military tensions rise around Taiwan. UK’s recent security+defence review declared China to be a “systemic competitor” but also said the UK would be seeking “deeper trade links + more investment”. Can you have your cake and eat it?
In 2020 UK has banned Huawei; offered UK passports to HK citizens + issued sanctions against PRC officials involved in alleged persecution of Uyghur Muslims. But there is a split within the UK government.
Economic/Education Ministries are soft on free speech/intellectual property issues. Foreign/Defence Ministries want more Australia like sanctions on Beijing. It is noteworthy that the new aircraft carrier will bypass the Taiwan Strait in an effort to appease China.
Tugendhat wants an anti-China forum but Foreign Secretary Raab has dropped the idea of joining the Quad – Asia’s NATO. So there is division+contradiction on the UK side. China watches/waits.