from The Forum on Conflict Prevention

U.S. - China Policy Recommendations

Following nearly three years of increasingly hostile/agressive relations between the U.S. and China, important measures are needed now more than ever to relax tensions between these two great powers. Here are a few of the policy perspectives and recommendations we have discussed at The Boehm Institution.

Research Analysis by Global Visionary Forum

January 13, 2023

The Issue of Taiwan:

US-China relations have been a topic of much discussion and debate in recent years, with tensions between the two nations escalating on various fronts. One issue that has been particularly contentious is the status of Taiwan. Taiwan, officially known as the Republic of China (ROC), has been governed independently from mainland China since the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949. However, the People's Republic of China (PRC) has never recognized Taiwan's sovereignty and claims the island as a part of its own territory. The US has long maintained a policy of "strategic ambiguity" towards Taiwan, recognizing the PRC as the sole legal government of China but also providing military and economic support to Taiwan. This policy has been aimed at avoiding a direct confrontation with China while also ensuring Taiwan's security and autonomy.

However, the Trump administration took a more assertive stance towards Taiwan, increasing arms sales and high-level diplomatic contacts with Taiwan. This move was seen as a direct challenge to China's claim over Taiwan and led to increased tensions between the two nations. The Biden administration has indicated that it will continue to support Taiwan's security and autonomy, but it remains to be seen if it will adopt a more conciliatory approach towards China or maintain the more confrontational stance of the previous administration. In any case, the issue of Taiwan will continue to be a major point of contention in US-China relations, with both nations likely to use it as a bargaining chip in negotiations on other issues. It will be important for the international community to find a way to balance the interests of both China and Taiwan, while also ensuring peace and stability in the region.

The recent semiconductor controls:

The US government has imposed a ban on the export of certain semiconductors to China citing national security concerns. The ban is part of a broader effort by the US to restrict China's access to advanced technology and limit its ability to develop its own semiconductor industry. One of the main reasons for the ban is the belief that China's development of its own semiconductor industry poses a national security risk to the United States. The US government argues that China's advancement in semiconductor technology could be used for military and espionage purposes.

Another reason for the ban is the US government's concerns about human rights abuses in China. The ban targets specific Chinese firms that the US government believes are involved in human rights abuses and activities that threaten US national security. The ban also targets companies that are deemed to be owned or controlled by the Chinese military.

Additionally, the US government is concerned that China's development of its own semiconductor industry could lead to a loss of jobs and economic competitiveness for the US. The US government believes that restricting access to advanced technology will help to level the playing field and protect US businesses and workers.

The Trump administration imposed the ban in 2020 and the Biden administration has maintained the ban citing similar concerns. The ban has the potential to negatively impact China's high-tech industries and its ability to develop advanced technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence, and advanced manufacturing. Critics of the ban argue that it could lead to retaliation from China and further escalate tensions between the two nations.

January 13, 2023

Author: Forum on Conflict Prevention