The founder of a German-based political and economic think tank has cautioned that attempts to de-risk from China “will only lead to the self-destruction of the economies of the West.” She stressed that de-risking policies would hurt their originators more than they could hurt China.
The Risks of De-Risking From China
The founder of the Schiller Institute, Helga Zepp-LaRouche, expressed concerns about the adverse consequences of Western countries’ efforts to de-risk from China in an interview with Global Times reporter Li Xuanmin, published on Monday. The Schiller Institute is a German-based political and economic think tank with stated members in 50 countries.
“The politicians pushing for ‘de-risking’ don’t seem to understand what every competent industrialist knows, that it is not possible to instantly replace China’s trade and investment partnership, since China offers very well-built infrastructure and a qualified labor force, which still has to take years to be built up in other countries,” she explained, cautioning:
So the ‘de-risking’ policy is prone to hurt its originators more than it could hurt China, as we have seen already with the blowback coming from the sanctioning policy.
The Schiller Institute founder was further asked whether the G7 countries could push their de-risking strategy with China. “The G7 countries will only do so at the expense of their own economies,” she replied, adding: “We have this year the 10th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and there are presently 151 countries and 30 major international organizations who are cooperating with China under the initiative, which has become one of the major locomotives of the world economy.”
She noted: “Extremely belatedly the G7 discovered this at their recent summit in Hiroshima, Japan, and they said: ‘Oh, we should talk more to the so-called ‘swing’ states, like Brazil, Indonesia, and India.’”
However, Zepp-LaRouche pointed out that the G7 “obviously overlooked that some of them are already members of the BRICS, and the other has reportedly also applied for membership in the BRICS.” The BRICS nations comprise Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. More than 19 countries have either applied to join the economic bloc or have expressed interest in joining.
The attempt to ‘de-risk’ from China will only lead to the self-destruction of the economies of the West, and threatens to lead to the absolute sidelining of the European continent in terms of world history.
Last week, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told the House Financial Services Committee that ceasing trade with China would be “a big mistake” for the U.S. However, she emphasized: “De-risk? Yes. Decouple? Absolutely not.”
Zepp-LaRouche argued that “the ‘decoupling’ and the ‘de-risking’ push are just the same,” adding: “Behind it is the geopolitical intention to contain China’s economic rise by cutting it off from certain advanced technologies.” The think tank founder stressed: “But that train has left the station already, given the fact that China is leading the world in terms of numbers of patents, as well as key areas of science and technology, such as 5G technology.”
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