China's latest propaganda weapon against Donald Trump is small and round. "Hi all. I'm a soybean. I don't look like much, but I'm very important, "says yellow comic Bean in an English-language video, which Chinese foreign broadcaster CGTN posted on his website last Friday. The clip is aimed at American farmers: Trump's core voter, suffering in trade conflict between China and America. You should understand: Look, China buys you 62 percent of your soy exports! You have at least as much to lose as we do!
The video is part of a new Beijing PR strategy: no longer as funny as before, rar opponent splits. In June, Chinese president had chosen clear words: "In our culture we are hitting back," said Xi Jinping, according to Wall Street Journal, during a meeting with Western group leaders. The first customs round of Americans on goods worth 34 billion dollars was immediately applied to China with duties to same extent. Since n, state media have unexpectedly tamed mselves.
When Trump announced punitive tariffs on all Chinese imports worth 500 billion dollars last Friday, it was read for days in state media: nothing. The word "trade war" may not appear in many headlines. The press is encouraged to keep subject small. Personal attacks on Trump are taboo. So it is in government propaganda memos that became public.
"The leadership has noticed that she has not done a favour with her aggressive appearance," says Jörg Wuttke, former president of European Chamber of Commerce in Beijing. Hu Xingdou, one of few Chinese economists currently openly talking about trade conflict, says: "Trump is gaining support at home, but China's image has suffered. The situation puts government in a state of embarrassment. "
For a long time, Xi Trump's war cry seems to have kept a bluff. After first summit in Florida, US president had raved about "great chemistry" between himself and China's president, his daughter Ivanka got her business licenses in China, in Beijing scheme investors with family of Trump's son-in-law. Slirs China about trade war now in an economic crisis, Xi threatens to lose power at home: The Chinese president, who was still praising himself as a foreign policy genius, could now stand out as an amateur who has gambled. An eye-to-eye revenge does not work: China exports about three times as much goods to US as it introduces from America.This article comes from time No. 31/2018. Here you can read entire output.
The immediate damage of punitive duties is limited. As announced at end of August, Trump imposes tariffs on a furr 200 billion dollar imports, which slows China's growth by only 0.3 percentage points this year, estimates analysts from international banks. China has long since ceased to be as dependent on exports as it once was. The psychological effects of such a setback in trade are more dangerous: Chinese economy is already experiencing difficult days.
Since January, prices on Chinese stock markets have been broken down by more than 20 percent on average. Growth in second quarter decreased to 6.7 percent (6.9 percent in same quarter last year), which was definitely wanted by central government, which has been backing state investment since 2017. It wants to remove huge debts of public budgets. However, major projects such as new Silk Road trade route are now faltering.
The recently successful technology industry is also struggling with setbacks: venture capital funds in booming region Shenzhen had collected up to 50 percent less investment in first quarter of year than 2017, an investment consulting firm reported Called Zero2IPO. The Gehypte electronics manufacturer Xiaomi achieved only half of targeted 100 billion in his Hong Kong stock market debut.Updated Date: 29 July 2018, 12:00