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The world begins to “social distance” itself from China in the wake of the pandemic

The world begins to “social distance” itself from China in the wake of the pandemic

As leaders in Europe, Africa, and Asia reexamine economic ties to China, its full recovery doesn’t look promising.

As nations around the world struggle to deal with outbreaks of the Wuhan coronavirus, China is now experiencing the first phase of what could be considered social distancing on an international scale.

To begin with, it is being reported that China suffered its worst economic contraction since the 1970s, with a serious hit to its factory activity.

The world’s second-largest economy shrank 6.8% from a year ago in the three months ending in March after factories, shops and travel were closed to contain the infection, official data showed Friday.

That was stronger than some forecasts that called for a contraction of up to 16% but China’s worst performance since before market-style economic reforms started in 1979.

Some forecasters earlier said China, which led the way into a global shutdown to fight the virus, might rebound as early as this month. But they have been cutting growth forecasts and pushing back recovery timelines as negative trade, retail sales and other data pile up.

“I don’t think we will see a real recovery until the fourth quarter or the end of the year,” said economist Zhu Zhenxin at the Rushi Finance Institute in Beijing.

There are now signs that China’s lack of transparency and its failure to contain the spread of the virus internationally is slowing down its economic recovery. It is now apparent that European governments are hardening their positions toward China as they weigh future business activity with the nation.

French President Emmanuel Macron accused Beijing of not being upfront over its handling of the epidemic, while in the U.K., Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plans to involve Chinese tech giant Huawei Technologies Co. in the nation’s next-generation mobile network may fall prey to mounting opposition.

The European Union’s position on China has been relatively measured, but leaders are beginning to call for a more thorough examination of its activities amid accusations Beijing has covered up the true scale of the epidemic. American intelligence officials are said to have concluded that China concealed the extent of its outbreak and under-reported the number of cases and deaths.

“Let’s not be so naive as to say it’s been much better at handling this,” Macron told the Financial Times in an interview published Thursday, referring to China. “We don’t know — there are clearly things that have happened that we don’t know about.”

When you’ve lost Macron . . . .

As global leaders weigh the actions taken by the Chinese Communist Party in the wake of the pandemic, little things like bad test kits and underwear-based masks add up. So it is not surprising that some countries are reassessing their plans to be part of China’s 5G global empire.

The UK is moving to drop Huawei as a vendor for the country’s 5G cellphone network in a major blow to Communist China over poor coronavirus transparency.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, now recovering from COVID-19, gave the Chinese company a role in 5G infrastructure this year, squashing opposition last month by 24 votes in the 650-seat House of Commons.

But now, concern about the Chinese Communist Party’s inaccurate reporting on the coronavirus has lawmakers crafting plans for a retreat.

“We need to devise a proper, realistic exit strategy from relying on Huawei,” Conservative Member of Parliament Damian Green told Bloomberg News. “Our telecom providers … need to know the government is determined to drive down Huawei’s involvement to zero percent over a realistic timescale.”

China’s recent, brutal treatment of African nationals living there has raised alarm bells on that continent.

…[The] that decades long quest for influence in Africa was gravely challenged last week when a group of disgruntled African ambassadors in Beijing wrote to Foreign Affairs Minister Wang Yi to complain that citizens from Togo, Nigeria and Benin living in Guangzhou, southern China, were evicted from their homes and made to undergo obligatory testing for Covid-19.

“In some cases, the men were pulled out of their families and quarantined in hotels alone,” the note, seen by POLITICO, said.

The incident, which caused widespread discontent both within Africa and among the diaspora after videos posted on social media showed people of African descent being evicted from their homes, resulting in a rare diplomatic showdown between Chinese and African officials.

Finally, Asian nations that are heavily influenced by China are being more open about some important negative aspects about the relationship.

Vietnamese officials say China is intentionally mislabeling its products as “made in Vietnam” to avoid American tariffs, and have ordered offices to more aggressively examine products’ certificates of origin.

Chinese firms first export products to Vietnam, then change the labeling on packages before exporting the goods to the United States, Japan or Europe, they said.

“Dozens” of products have been identified, Hoang Thi Thuy, a Vietnamese Customs Department official, told state-run media, and goods like textiles, fishery products, agricultural products, steel, aluminum, and processed wooden products were most vulnerable to the fraud.

Looking at the trends, and to paraphrase economist Paul Krugman: If the question is when China will recover, a first-pass answer is never.


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You mean, a leader who looks like Winnie the Pooh (at least the Disney recension) might be a baddie?

In any case, China is holding military maneuver close to Taiwan. Maybe this Coronavirus was a test to see if biological warfare might work in forcing Chinese reunification under Beijing.

Yet CNN and the rest of the leftist media is doing everything in its power to protect China, especially if it means bashing Trump.

    Josey Yahoo in reply to bw222. | April 18, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    The MSM will report the invasion as, “China rescues Taiwan from ruthless revolutionaries!”

I’m waiting for Il Duce Pelosi to want to add China into the next stimulus because they are victims of Trump closing down China early on.

Be it intentionally released, or used after an accidental release of this virus, China sent people all over to spread this virus to at the very least share the blame. There was talk right after the trade deal that China would find a means to get out of the trade deal made with President Trump. Given the ruthless nature of Chinese leadership, using this virus as a weapon is very probable.

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to oldgoat36. | April 19, 2020 at 11:39 am

    Xi Xi being made Dictator for life was a mighty big clue to their evil.

    The Democrats, the American Left, and the MSM applauding it and calling for an American dictatorship like it (because it works so well) was another big clue their evil.

    Methinks Communist China will get out of the trade deal alright, but only because they’ll have no trade left.


    “Vietnamese officials say China is intentionally mislabeling its products as “made in Vietnam”

    Yamamma in reply to oldgoat36. | April 19, 2020 at 5:45 pm

    And also bought up all the ppe worldwide.

The good China = Taiwan

The bad China = Red China

Comanche Voter | April 18, 2020 at 5:40 pm

My hobby is RC model airplanes; I’ve bought a lot of bits and pieces out of china for the hobby. I think I’m done–will look for suppliers from other countries or will do without.

They crawled through bat feces, blood and urine to find this virus so they could play with it in their Wuhan lab. Then somehow it escaped or was released and they lied about it.

So yeah—I’m going to get out of the habit of buying Chinese goods.

    scooterjay in reply to Comanche Voter. | April 19, 2020 at 9:49 am

    Same here….no more Hobby King purchases. I’m making a return to control line stunt, building a Sig Skyray now

      notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to scooterjay. | April 19, 2020 at 11:41 am

      “Vietnamese officials say China is intentionally mislabeling its products as “made in Vietnam”

    The idea that profit margins and cost savings are better for American businesses and consumers if the goods are made by the Commies has been obliterated.

    Whatever cost savings we thought we had benefited in the last thirty years from cheaply made Chinese goods, we paid dearly with lives, loss of freedom and economic ruin in just the last two months.

    I shall never buy from China again.

Climate change? De-‘C’hinaization?

This may bring about a global level of consumer avoidance of foreign (Chinese) products not seen in the US since the disfavor of Japanese goods in the decades following WWII. All the more reason for corporations to get a clue & bring manufacturing back from offshore.

Good. China should feel some real pain after what it did with the Wuhan virus. However, we shouldn’t rub salt into their wounds. The world doesn’t need the dragon lashing out in any direction. Let it sit in its cave and enjoy the symptoms the rest of us have been feeling.

If the question is when will Krugman ever extract his head from his hindquarters, a first-pass answer is “never”. Last-pass too.

I stopped at “To begin with, it is being reported that China suffered its worst economic contraction since the 1970s, with a serious hit to its factory activity.”

Who really gives a crap? Am i supposed to feel sorry for them? You can tell us, but how about rephrasing it like…

Well, it’s just the start and already it is being reported that China suffered its worst economic contraction since the 1970s, with a serious hit to its factory activity. Better late than never, and let’s keep the hits coming!

Screw the government of China and their Communist Party! Better Dead Than Red!

    WestRock in reply to WestRock. | April 18, 2020 at 8:18 pm

    Sorry, I can’t stand what the CCP has done, and not happy with our CCP appeasing libtard politicians, business leaders and SJWs.

    I did read it through to the end. This piece is 110% full of great reporting and covers global reactions to these lying sadistic sociopaths. Like the name of a since closed restaurant in town, let me say “Fu King China!”

    markymark in reply to WestRock. | April 20, 2020 at 12:33 pm

    Q: What do you call a 6.8% contraction in the Chinese economy?
    A: A good start.

China has bribed most of the US media, half of the US educational system and MANY democrat politcians in office. (Hear that, Feinstein and Pelosi?)

When these traitors try walking away from their ChiComm masters, they’ll find out it’s not so easy.

On the other hand, considering the velvet glove treatment AG Barr gives other elected criminals like illian omar, maybe their walking away from the Chi-Comms won’t be so hard, and will be be a feignt until the smoke clears.

AG Barr’s performance is about 20%. Whatever happens with Durham, it’ll be too little, too late. Even if it does help the reelecton of PDJT, the damage to the American psyche done by feckless (if not downright corruption) of sessions and barr is permenant.

Looks like Trump was right again. Fascists hate it when Trump is right.

Transfer whatever of China’s industrial market share that cannot come here to India. That would be justice and a humanitarian and geopolitical improvement.

Also, electronically confiscate the $1.2 trillion of US Treasuries China owns and move 2 carrier battle groups into the South China Sea. Finally, declare Taiwanese independence.

The good news is China will pay some price as they should. The bad news is western culture leaders
have short term memories and the pain on China will go away sooner than it should.

Western countries have several very serious enemies: 1. China, 2. Islam, 3. the media that promotes the demise of democracy world wide.

Buy more guns and ammo while you can. Those with guns are citizens, those without are slaves to their