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G-7 and China


The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is angry at the G-7 statement, while Taiwan is happy, and Russia and China are moving closer together.

The G-7 meeting, which ended on May 21, concluded with a joint statement saying that the group condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It also stressed the importance of “peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” an apparent reference to China. The statement cited Chinese incursions in the East and South China seas, calling for a peaceful resolution. Short of condemnation or confrontation, the group stressed its desire to “de-risk” but not decouple from China.

This mitigating language suggests that the G-7 is recognizing the threat from the Chinese regime but is still softening its words, trying to avoid an outright confrontation. The desire to preserve economic relations prevents the group from taking more drastic actions. The G-7 joint statement referenced China’s non-market behavior and economic coercion but still prioritized the importance of continued cooperation with China.

The G-7’s position can be seen as somewhat duplicitous. The CCP has repeatedly been and continues to be the aggressor, transgressor, and violator of trade deals and norms. And yet the G-7 and others are afraid to upset Beijing because they believe they need China trade. They even recognize that China supports the war in Ukraine but fail to bring meaningful sanctions, such as a trade ban, against China.

On the other hand, the G-7 leaders are united. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said at the conference that “China poses the greatest challenge to global security and prosperity in our time.” This sentiment is shared by other G-7 leaders.

The group is also taking a harsher stance on Moscow, collectively bringing greater sanctions against Russia, demonstrating that the war in Ukraine has shifted the global power dynamic, bringing the allies closer together and cementing Washington’s position as leader of the free world. The United States could use its leadership role to encourage its allies to shift trade and investment away from China, relocating manufacturing to India, Vietnam, Indonesia, and other friendly nations. This would help these countries develop economically while also pulling them further into the Western orbit rather than allowing them to be co-opted by China.

At a May 21 press conference, President Joe Biden stated that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) military activity in the Taiwan Strait has intensified and that he expects it to increase further ahead of Taiwan’s presidential and legislative elections next year. The president reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to providing Taiwan with weapons. He said, “There is clear understanding among most of our allies that, in fact, if China were to act unilaterally, there would be a response.” The president appears to be saying that the United States and its allies would come to Taiwan’s defense if the PLA invades.

Epoch Times Photo
U.S. President Joe Biden (L) and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the Group of Seven leaders summit in Hiroshima, Japan, on May 18, 2023. (Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)

Earlier this year, the Japan Times issued an article outlining how Japanese military support would be crucial to successfully defend Taiwan from a Chinese invasion. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on May 10 said, “The peace and stability of the Taiwan Strait is critical not just for our country [Japan], but for the whole international community.” Japan, Canada, South Korea, and France have all expressed some interest in joining or participating with AUKUS, the trilateral security pact between Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

South Korea is also vying to become a “global pivotal state.” Previously, Seoul’s focus on the threat from North Korea had prevented South Korea from playing a larger role in regional politics. Increasingly, however, President Yoon Suk-yeol has been holding meetings with the United States and other nations, discussing the war in Ukraine and improving ties with Japan. Participating with AUKUS and other counter-CCP military alliances could help to increase South Korea’s political clout.

Taiwan’s reaction to the G-7 meeting was positive. Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a May 20 statement in which it reiterated G-7 comments regarding the maintenance of peace in the Taiwan Strait while also outlining examples of the CCP’s aggression toward Taiwan.

The CCP reacted negatively to the G-7 summit. Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said the G-7 was a real threat to global security.

Immediately after the G-7 meeting, China and Russia held their own summit. Moscow issued a statement, calling the G-7 meeting an incubator for Russia and China hate. Both Moscow and Beijing are accusing NATO of aggression and interfering in other nations’ sovereign affairs.

Meanwhile, the West and NATO are increasing their support for Ukraine while signaling that they are willing to increase their support for Taiwan and to contain the CCP threat in the South China Sea. Tokyo is in discussions regarding opening a NATO office in Japan. This is significant, as Japan is not a NATO member, and it represents a shift of NATO’s area of operations and primary mission from Europe and Russia to the Pacific and China.

Ultimately, the result of the G-7 summit is greater cohesion between the member nations and other allies, while Russia and China are more committed to building an opposing bloc. The CCP and the West have issued statements saying they do not want a new cold war, but this is where we are headed. The difference between this cold war and the one with the Soviet Union, however, is that the West continues to trade on a massive scale with China, indirectly funding the PLA.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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