2021年7月号 D項


2021年7月号 D項

Debate: Topic and Outline

>>> 当院論評 Comments By Chiba

今年1月にバイデン政権が発足して100日が経ち、バイデン政権の評価がなされつつある。大統領もそれを意識しつつ政権を運営強いるとも思われる。すなわち、中国が経済的、軍事的に巨大化しつつある。トランプ大統領もこれに攻して来た。米国民としては共和党派と民主党派に分断しつつもこの件では、態度は一致している。 では、バイデン大統領として中国とどの様に折り合いを付け様するか分析することを試みる。折しもお馴染みのイアン・ブレ―マーの論評を紹介し、意見を述べたい。



>>> 当院翻訳 Translated By Hagiwara

U.S. Aims for ‘Competitive Coexistence’ with China–Ian Bremmer, President, Eurasia Group, Inc.
2021/05/20 Nikkei Newspaper

US-China relations are becoming increasingly confrontational. U.S. President Joe Biden seems not willing to explore ways to “reset” relations with China due to the too high political risks in the U.S. This is because the U.S. political establishment is almost unanimous across party lines that China’s vision of hegemony is unacceptable.

This means that in the short term, the two countries will continue to exchange additional customs duties and economic sanctions. The problem for the rest of the world is that the Biden administration is forcing the U.S.-China conflict on them, and asking them to choose one side or the other. But fortunately, the Biden administration is pragmatic.

It is still fresh in our minds that the former Trump administration strongly urged countries to keep Chinese equipment out of the 5G network. While the U.K. and other steadfast allies such as Australia complied with the U.S. administration’s request, most countries avoided the decision out of strategic judgment. Unless there is a compelling reason not to offend the U.S. government (for example, since the U.K. left the European Union, it needs to conclude a free trade agreement with the U.S. and establish good trade relations), their countries should avoid making a deal with one of the world’s two superpowers and excluding the other. This is because it would limit the ability of the two countries to balance each other according to geopolitical needs.

Moreover, the Chinese government is providing funds and technology to many developing countries through its “One Belt, One Road” initiative. These countries, which want to improve the lives of their citizens, cannot afford to refuse support from the Chinese government. If the U.S. government demands that these countries do not do business with China in exchange for trading with itself, it runs the risk of giving away most of the world to China at a critical geopolitical juncture.

The Biden administration understands this point. He is more sensitive to foreign perceptions of the U.S. than the previous Trump administration, and he knows the limits of forcing countries to make such painful decisions. So they are trying to get back to the starting point of capitalism, which is competition.

The U.S.’s top priority is to “competitively coexist” with China in as many countries as possible, so that no country falls completely under China’s influence. This is why the U.S. wants to spread its money and investment to the countries that need U.S. support the most, such as Latin America, Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Europe, where the Chinese government has already extended its hands. There is no guarantee that these countries will follow the U.S. government’s lead in this “competitive” environment, but there is also no guarantee that they will follow the Chinese government’s lead.

It is not easy to pursue this *competitive coexistence* policy. As China is a state-controlled economy, the government can expand companies more effectively and fund them in ways that benefit the country directly. Nevertheless, the U.S. has a lot to offer if the U.S. strategically launches foreign aid and provides incentives to private companies by investing in projects in key countries. Moreover, it is possible to use influence over international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to encourage them to provide transparent loans on more favorable terms than China. In the process, it would also have the advantage of strengthening the functions of these international organizations.

Some countries have already begun to keep *One Belt, One Road* initiative at a distance. The quality of development projects which China has led is often inferior to those supported by Western countries, and the conditions for bearing the burden are also heavier. This is evidence that some of the recipient countries are beginning to oppose the Chinese government.

Hardliners in the U.S. will oppose sending money to countries that trade with China. However, this is the wrong approach. The Biden administration is convinced that the U.S. can compete with China abroad and is trying to use its own strengths. More important is that the U.S. is not asking them to work against their will. In the long run, it must be in the U.S. national interest to show the world why working with the U.S., no with China, is better.

Provide strategic support.

 “I believe that it is a policy that will help the people of freedom”. In 1947, the U.S. President Harry S. Truman formulated a new foreign strategy for the Cold War with the Soviet Union. One of the pillars of this strategy was the Marshal Plan. It aimed to support post-war reconstructions in Europe with large-scale aid and to build a wall against communists.

The “One Belt, One Road” initiative has been described as China’s Marshall Plan. It is likely to be seen as an inevitable weapon in its struggle for domination with the U.S. If this is the case, it is not unreasonable that someone says that the U.S. should counter China with the “Marshall Plan 2.0” in line with the era of the new Cold war.

A shortage of vaccines and medical supplies, delays in the normalization of the economy, and a ballooning foreign debt. There are many emerging and developing countries that have fallen on hard times due to the Corona disaster. It is good that the U.S. leads in providing support to these countries to prevent them from being taken in by China.

However, if the U.S. prioritizes its own national interest too much and imposes loyalty and collateral, the line between communist nations may become unclear. While accepting “competitive coexistence” with China, the U.S. would like to increase the number of fellow democratic nations through strategic assistance.

(Nikkei Editor: Hiroyuki Kotake.)

(ご参照:)以下は和文原稿です。 (整理:リ)


2021/05/20 日本経済新聞














だが米国の国益を優先するあまり、忠誠や見返りを強要するのでは、共産主義国家との一線が曖昧になりかねない。中国との「競争的共存」を容認しつつ、戦略的な援助で民主主義国家の仲間を増やしたい。(編集委員 小竹洋之)




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