October 9, 2017
Amy Celico '98, Principal, Albright Stonebridge Group
David M. Lampton, Director of SAIS China and George and Sadie Hyman Professor of China Studies
Cui Liru, Senior Advisor & Former President, China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations (CICIR)
Moderated by John Lipsky, Peter G. Peterson Distinguished Scholar at the Henry A. Kissinger Center for Public Affairs and Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Institute
The China-United States Exchange Foundation, Foreign Policy Institute, and SAIS China hosted a panel discussion examining US-China relations during a pivotal time in their partnership.
Cui Liru of CICIR framed the current environment as a power struggle between the United States and China. He noted that the configuration of the bilateral relationship has been changing and it is in the best interests of everyone to strive for smoother interactions between the two countries. Illustrating one example of tension, Liru explained that China is willing to live peacefully with the present North Korean regime rather than destabilize the region through military interventions in the Korean peninsula.
Albright Stonebridge Group's Amy Celico stated that it took talented political and business leadership to set the US-China economic relationship at a trading value of over $600 billion per year. While recognizing these achievements, she noted the relationship has its challenges. Recently, the US began investigating Chinese investments which may threaten intellectual property rights and violate rules on the importation of aluminum and steel. The progress of American businesses in China has slowed, Celico said, adding that US companies deserve the same level of access Chinese firms enjoy here.
Moderator John Lipsky mentioned that relationships with multilateral organizations like IMF, WTO and UN are deteriorating, a recent example being the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris climate agreement.
David Lampton summarized by observing that the world is more open to China than China is open to the world, citing the example of widespread Chinese media outlets in the US—the converse scenario is simply not possible in today's China, he said.