Two reports, from the South China Morning Post and Axios, indicate that Beijing and Washington both remain interested in a face-to-face meeting between General Secretary Xí Jìnpíng 习近平 and President Donald Trump to settle trade and economic disputes.
- Beijing proposed that Trump meet Xi “around the time of the annual Boao Forum for Asia, which runs from March 26-29,” but “neither the place nor the timing [of the summit] is finalized,” a source told the SCMP.
- In Washington, Trump’s advisers are considering proposing a second Mar-a-Lago summit for “as soon as mid-March,” Axios reported.
The fact that a presidential-level meeting is still in the cards — and that both sides are now reportedly angling for it to happen in mid-to-late March — means that the 90 days of trade talks are likely to be extended past the March 2 deadline. Last week, Trump said that he would not meet Xi before the deadline, but further planning for a summit had not been reported.
Other news in the U.S.-China trade war, or tech cold war, or what we are calling the Pacific Reset:
U.S. government pushback on AI, drugs, and a Polar Silk Road
- Trump to lay out an AI plan / Axios
“The American AI Initiative, as the new strategy is named, is unlikely to call out China directly… But there’s little doubt among experts that the administration is responding to Beijing’s unrelenting push to fund Chinese AI research, encourage its implementation, and export AI tools.”
- Schumer announces fentanyl sanctions bill before China talks / AP
“The Senate’s top Democrat is introducing legislation to ‘hold China accountable’ and sanction laboratories and other traffickers who export fentanyl to the United States.”
- How the Pentagon countered China’s designs on Greenland / WSJ (paywall)
“The Pentagon raised an alarm last year over what it deemed a troubling development in this ice-cloaked territory: China was looking to bankroll and build three airports that could give it a military foothold off Canada’s coast.”
The companies that benefit from low-cost Huawei equipment
- Rural U.S. carriers resist proposed Chinese telecom ban aimed at Huawei / WSJ (paywall)
The Rural Wireless Association estimates “it might cost from $800 million to $1 billion for them to replace all the potentially affected gear from their wireless networks — costs they believe the government is legally required to reimburse.”
Berkeley follows Oxford’s lead and bans new Huawei-funded research
- University of California Berkeley bans new research projects with Huawei after US indicts Chinese telecoms giant / SCMP
Apple and Huawei: Bottom line of smartphone sales
- Apple China iPhone sales dive; Huawei extends lead in world’s biggest market / TheStreet
“International Data Corp. figures show Apple’s iPhone sales fell by an annual rate of 19.9% over the final quarter of last year, clipping its market share to around 11.5% from 11.8%… Huawei, meanwhile, took its market share to just under 30%, thanks to a 23.3% increase in fourth quarter shipments.”
Europe: Three spying controversies at the same time
- China hits back at European Union’s claim it has 250 spies working in Brussels / SCMP
- China denies ‘ridiculous’ spying allegations by Lithuania / AFP
- China and Norway face off over ‘ridiculous’ claims Beijing is using Huawei to spy on Scandinavian host / SCMP
- Didi Kirsten Tatlow on Twitter: “Plausible deniability is built into #CPC’s methods/systems/security architecture. Alleging loss of business on “no proof” grounds is clever because it’s essentially the party using open society/market economy laws/arguments against open societies. This is scary stuff.”
Huawei in the Czech Republic
- U.S. campaign against Huawei faces challenge in Eastern Europe / WSJ (paywall)
“In the Czech Republic, officials have taken opposite sides on how to balance security concerns raised by the U.S., and the country’s own cybersecurity officials, with the desire for Chinese investment, trade and business opportunities. The Czech prime minister wants to consider restrictions on Huawei, but the country’s president has embraced the company… [Czech President Milos Zeman] is now one of Huawei’s biggest defenders in Europe.”
- Huawei threatens lawsuit against Czech Republic after security warning / NYT (porous paywall)
“In an attempt to push back against attempts to limit its reach in Europe, the Chinese technology giant Huawei threatened legal action against the Czech Republic if its cyber security agency did not rescind its warning about the risk the company poses to the nation’s critical infrastructure.”
Previously in SupChina’s trade war coverage: