Below is our translation of an article from RIA Novosti with this foreword and notes [in brackets] by Vince Dhimos. Economists understand that it was China that brought the world back to its feet after the 2008-9 Great Recession, and despite the anti-China hate campaign currently emanating from the White House, economists are expecting China to again fuel the recovery.
Of course, the US financial press, as an obedient lapdog of the White House, must not state this all too openly lest it sully the Washington political machine. Which is why I resort to analyses from Russia, where economists are free to speak their minds.
A little salt for Washington’s wounds:
“... according to the results of the year, China will grow by 2.6%. And this is a sensation – which of the major economies in the world even dreams of positive growth these days?”
Note the author’s upbeat and friendly attitude toward China. This is an important observation because the US has been trying desperately lately to drive a wedge between Russia and China, by going easy on Russia and viciously smearing China in the Western press. It should have been obvious to the US manipulators that there is not a snowball’s chance in hell that Russia and China could be driven apart with such barbarian tactics. The worse the US treats China, the more sympathy it garners in Moscow. Hurt my brother, hurt me. These two brotherly nations will support each other through thick and thin. It is time for a major foreign policy overhaul in Washington.
The Chinese locomotive of the world economy is cautiously picking up speed
Why is the annual spring session of the Chinese parliament a more and more important event for the world, and especially now? At least for two reasons. First: at the session it will become clear whether the Chinese economy will again, as in 2009-10, be the engine of global growth, that is, help other countries overcome the viral crisis. And the second: everyone is interested in discussing how ready China is for further confrontation with the United States at least until the presidential elections in November – that is, it is simply a matter of military spending.
Big and small sensations on these topics have been expected from last Friday (when the session solemnly opened) until the very end of the event, that is, until the end of next week. But already in advance, the world media have meticulously analysed all the opinions and leaks from China itself and the surrounding area: in the end, we are talking about the health of the world's first economy. (The parliament is traditionally occupied primarily with the economy; foreign policy declarations are in second place there.) [By contrast with the US, Russia freely calls China the number one economy because it understands the difference between an economy up to its eyeballs in debt and on life support (thanks to the Fed’s dollar printing press) and a real economy that still makes things to sell and export.]
Speaking of health and pandemics, Beijing propaganda emphasized the very fact of the opening of the session. For obvious reasons, it was detained for 78 days. But now several thousand parliamentarians have flocked to Beijing, if we count the delegates of the All-China Assembly of People's Representatives together with colleagues from the analogue of our Public Chamber – the People’s Political Consultative Council. They sit sometimes in masks, but live and side by side: it is clear that there is a demonstration of the country's return to normal.
Although this is already in order, zoom-diplomacy is falling away. For example, no one stopped preparing for the joint SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) and BRICS summits in our Northern capital in July (communication will be completely natural), while Donald Trump wants to organize the equally live G7 meeting at his home in the USA.
As for China's economic growth: in the first quarter, GDP fell by 6.8% and industrial production by 8.4%. However, the economy is reviving explosively (everyone is eager to work). Estimates of private expert economists (for example, China International Capital Corporation): according to the results of the year, China will grow by 2.6%. And this is a sensation – which of the major economies in the world even dreams of positive growth these days?
But there was an even greater sensation. On the first day of the session the head of the Chinese government, Li Keqiang, announced in his report: this year we have decided to completely abandon the announcement of target figures (in terms of GDP). Because the risks and challenges, both external and internal, are of an unprecedented scale.
This is the first time in decades that this has happened. This can be interpreted in different ways. The challenges are both pressure from the United States and the need to understand what is generally happening with the economy after quarantine damages. In general, the point now is not to set records, but to stabilize. But if the records (the 2.6%) are still there, then a new sensation will be born.
However, the prime minister very clearly outlined the parameters of the stabilization. It is necessary to create nine million jobs in cities in order to keep unemployment no higher than six percent. And yet, a long-standing goal is confirmed: to overcome extreme poverty in 2020. This refers to the village, the remaining one thousand depressed villages. Apparently, this plan was recognized as realistic.
The role of the locomotive of world development can be manifested in different ways. China may well allow itself to increase imports. Exports to countries like the United States (waging a full-scale economic war with China) will fall, but they would fall anyway – who expects any achievements from the United States or Europe today? In addition, there are no obstacles to the development of high-tech projects with countries in the framework of the "Belt and Way" project, which includes Russia. In addition, China is lucky – oil and gas prices so far are conducive to growth.
Any amount of growth is possible if you pour a lot of money into the economy. But here, the financiers of the world are watching China especially intently: too much money means inflation and various events with the renminbi. But the fact that precisely this year the new rules for foreign financial investors have gone into effect, removing the limits on the volume of investments from them – which turns out to be timely, because new money will come to the country. Not from the USA – it’s not necessary, the world is big.
In terms of finance, the guidelines are set as follows: a deficit of 141 billion US dollars, no more than 3.6% of GDP. Domestic loans for the same amount. Encouraging banks to reduce business debt by 353 billion. Inflation is no more than 3.5%. Few countries in the world are capable of keeping their systems in this order this year.
Military spending is a separate and interesting topic. On the one hand, the military suffered additional burdens and expenses to combat the pandemic (and the army even took part in this). And this despite the fact that American military activity in the South China Sea has quadrupled over the year. On the other hand, in a difficult year, military spending can be cut back and all efforts can be dedicated to restoring the civilian sphere.
In recent years, these expenditures in China have grown along with the the overall growth of the economy, but have never gone beyond two percent of GDP. So, now they should grow only slightly, if at all. In any case, officially and in dollar terms, last year they amounted to 177.6 billion (second place in the world), vs 732 billion, and 3.4% of GDP in the US. Does China bury military spending in other budget items? At any rate, even independent estimates, such as those of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, set a figure of 261 billion. To the US level.
Although plans to get four aircraft carrier groups by 2050 instead of the current two have not been cancelled, details will become clearer during the session.
In the meantime, the bottom line is the belief that it is in this difficult year that poverty will be lifted in China. The outside world, following the course of the Beijing parliamentary sessions, understands that this is also an indicator of the country's internal strength. [Yes, and which of the countries that constantly malign China has raised a pinky to help the poor?]
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Vince Dhimos posted an answer at Quora relating to the US’s current anti-China propaganda war:
WHILE THE US IS PARANOID ABOUT CHINA SURPASSING THE US ECONOMY, ARE PEOPLE AWARE OF INDIA’S AMBITIOUS AND STRATEGIC TAKEOVER OF US CORPORATIONS, ELIMINATING US JOBS AND MAKING THE US A SERVANT OF INDIA?
While the US is paranoid about China surpass the US economy, are the people aware of India's real ambitious and strategical taking over of the US corporations, eliminating US jobs and making US the servant for India tycoons?
Vince Dhimos Editor-in-Chief at New Silk Strategies (2016–present)
Because the US has created an alternate universe all its own in which it lives and it drags its satellites into this universe. The goal is, as stated by Caitlin Johnston:
The United States treats China as if it were Nazi Germany. This fall towards the third world war must be stopped before it is too late - World Affairs | News1 English
Point 1: We are in the midst of a slow-moving World War III between the centralized power alliance from the United States and the nations that have resisted their absorption.
The second point is that this is to be accomplished by propaganda. Your question says it’s paranoia, but the driver here is a fear on Trump’s part that he may not be re-elected. The anti-China hysteria is over re-election.
India is one of the countries targeted by Washington as potential allies in this war and they are being encouraged to participate in it. But the US knows it must make concessions, and one of the concessions is allowing India to absorb US corporations and profit from them.
Trump pretends that he cares about returning jobs to the US but he is, as usual, lying. He lies about everything. Just listen to one of his speeches if you don’t believe it. There is not an ounce of truth in him. If he cared about restoring jobs to America, he would not be giving these jobs to India, but his goal is not to get back US jobs, it is to form a quick ready-made coalition to help wage the propaganda war on China.
You may think this sounds outlandish. It is.
The latest in this war is the narrative that China is supposedly harvesting the organs of executed Falun Gong members. This story was fed to the news media by a group called the China Tribunal, which is linked to Falun Gong, which was founded by a megalomaniac by the name of Li Hongzhi, who claims to be able to perform miracles but refuses to do them and says he is the saviour of humanity. Obviously, this man has a severe mental problem. He has concocted fantastic stories before that turned out to be lies. But his group worships him and they are stoking these lies. The unscrupulous elites in Washington and their sock puppets in the media regurgitate these stories to smear China. [see http://www.newsilkstrategies.com/international-relations/western-media-regurgitate-as-gospel-horror-stories-about-china-fed-to-them-by-a-pathological-liar]
India is lucky for the moment because it enjoys the indulgence of the US. But woe to India once the US no longer needs it as an ally against China or in the event China pulls out of the economic crisis and comes roaring back to life even as the US lies prostrate. If India – perhaps along with China – rises to an economic level exceeding that of the US, it will be treated just as shabbily then as China is now.
The US keeps threatening to enforce its embargo on Venezuela and has warned Iran. But what can it do. It knows that if it tries to capture or turn back an Iranian vessel, Iran has the option to fire missiles at its bases, as it did in Iraq, where there was no US response. Washington also knows Russia and China are allies of Iran. China, for example, is relying heavily on the Iranian role in the BRI. If the US goes too far, an armed conflict could occur and that could sink Trump’s chances in November.
First Iranian tanker to reach Venezuela in next 24 hours: report
By News Desk
BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:30 P.M.) – Iranian state television reported on Saturday that five tankers are heading to Venezuela, loaded with 1.053 thousand barrels of fuel.
They pointed out that the first tanker is scheduled to arrive in Venezuela on Sunday, while the remaining four are still sailing in the Atlantic Ocean.
The fuel tankers, which have been identified as the Petunia, Faxon, Fortune, Forest, and Clavel, all entered the Atlantic Ocean’s waters earlier this week after crossing the Strait of Gibraltar.
According to data from maritime tracking services, the Fortune was last monitored in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Morocco on May 16th, and it is expected to reach its destination tomorrow.
The Petrunia, Faxon, and Clavel were also last detected in the same area on May 18 and May 19 and today May 23 respectively, and are expected to reach their destination on May 25, May 29 and June 2.
As for Forest, it is expected to reach its destination on May 25.
The ship tracking sites did not specify the destination of these carriers, but Iran made it known that these vessels were heading to the South American nation.
This issue raised international interest, especially in light of the incident of the British detention of an Iranian tanker at the Strait of Gibraltar last year.
The government of Venezuela has pledged to provide Iranian tankers with the required protection in its territorial waters, in anticipation of possible steps by the United States that imposed severe sanctions on both Tehran and Caracas.
US provoking conflict between China and India: analyst
By News Desk -2020-05-230
BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:00 P.M.) – The U.S. is pushing for a conflict between China and India after a recent confrontation between the two world powers along the Line of Contact between the them.
Quoting the Southern Asia expert, Andrei Volodin, Sputnik News reported that the latter pointed out how the recent statements by the U.S. Ambassador to India has been seen as an attempt by Washington to increase the tensions between the two countries.
“The statement (by the American ambassador) is just one example. Moreover, this statement obviously fits into the Trump administration’s current general strategy to discredit China as the ‘source’ of the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S., which is conducting an anti-Chinese campaign, is now trying to involve the maximum number of not only their satellites in Western Europe, but also the maximum number of Asian states. Asian countries, in general, react quite neutrally to these attempts”.
The expert said the U.S. support for India in the border conflict with China could provoke it to take unilateral action. In the context of the epidemiological crisis, even the Indian military believes that it’s necessary to focus as much as possible on the economy and development.
They are ready to come to terms with the fact that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is redistributing forces and assets in favour of the civilian sector.
“In addition, the experience of the 1962 war and subsequent conflicts between China and India is not in India’s favour”, Andrei Volodin said.
China’s restraint and its ability to achieve mutual understanding with India frustrate Washington’s strategic goal of them coming into conflict, as Delhi appreciates its independence and is unlikely to want Washington to use it as a tool to contain Beijing, Wang Peng from the People’s University of China said, commenting on the US diplomat’s statements:
“The Indo-Pacific Strategy is the key strategy among the Trump administration’s global foreign policy aims. In June 2017, there was a standoff between China and India in Doklam, and in November of the same year, the United States introduced the concept of the Indo-Pacific Strategy at the APEC meeting in Vietnam. There were only a few months between those events. It is no coincidence that many analysts believe that the Sino-Indian confrontation could have affected the development of Trump’s strategy. The US has never stopped trying to form a political ‘square’ consisting of the United States, Japan, India, and Australia to deter China”.
“Meanwhile, China maintains restraint and seeks mutual understanding with the Indian side; therefore the United States cannot achieve its strategic goals. The Trump administration relies heavily on provoking disputes and increased tension between certain countries and China to achieve its own goals, which allows the United States to make these countries even more strategically dependent. However, the problem is that the US strategy is contrary to India’s national interests and cultural traditions. India really appreciates its independence and doesn’t want to be used as a tool”.
The provocative nature of Alice Well’s statement is obvious given the difficult situation in the northwest section of the Line of Actual Control between China and India. In fact, her words can even be regarded as US support for India’s territorial claims against China, which could make the situation on the Sino-Indian border even more explosive. This month there have already been two, albeit minor, clashes involving dozens of military personnel from both sides.
Additional defensive structures are also being constructed on both sides of the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh, which also increases the tension. The other day, the Chinese military reported that India had built fortifications to deliberately foment conflict and unilaterally modify the existing border control system. The Global Times reported, citing a source in the PLA, that it had successfully restored the status quo in the Galwan Valley.
For its part, the Indian Express reported on 20 May that tensions along the Sino-Indian border in Ladakh near lake Pangong Tso had increased. According to the Indian newspaper, the Chinese military had tripled the number of patrol boats in the area to match the number of Indian craft in the waters off the western shore of the lake.