‘Two sessions’ will pave way for China in an increasingly uncertain world

Beijing: China enters its most important political week with the beginning of its “two sessions,” the assembly of the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

This year’s gathering will be particularly important given the crisis in Ukraine, the conflict in Gaza, and the increased economic pressure from the United States and others to restrict the sale of high-technology products to China.

While the Western “hype” about China’s imminent decline as a major economic power is not taken seriously by most scholars, there have been difficulties created for China by the rather hostile attitude exhibited by the United States toward China’s rise as a major technical power. There are also uncertainties connected to the upcoming elections in the United States, the results of which are far from certain.

China will no doubt continue taking measures to open its economy to foreign investment. The tensions with the United States have no doubt discouraged some U.S. companies from expanding their businesses in China, or prevented others from moving into the massive Chinese market.

The recent easing of credit by Chinese banks for specific categories of investment is seen as an important measure to help stimulate investment and maintain employment.

More of this is likely to come out of the NPC this year. There will no doubt be other measures to make it easier for foreign companies to invest in China and to create something of an even playing field with Chinese companies.

At the same time, the Chinese government will be wary about simply “opening all doors” given the clear intention expressed by U.S. CIA Director William Burns, that they are wholly intent on recruiting more human resources for purposes of espionage in China, which the United States has designated as its “most important rival.”
There will no doubt also be a discussion on protecting China’s data for the same reason. The recent executive order by U.S. President Biden to prevent data on U.S. companies and individuals from going to China has no doubt made it clear to the Chinese that there is also a “data war” in that rivalry, and they will certainly take appropriate measures to protect their own data.

There will continue to be an emphasis on pushing forward in all fields of science and technology. What China is being deprived of due to the restrictions from abroad will have to be made up by China’s own domestic talents. Already, there has been something of a “forced march” in the area of science and technology, and there may be some big surprises coming out of the NPC in that respect.

On the foreign policy front, there will no doubt be an escalation in China’s present attempts to create a more peaceful and harmonious world. The renewed attempt by China to discuss its peace initiative in Ukraine, with the recent visit of Special Representative of the Chinese Government on Eurasian Affairs Li Hui, to Russia, is an indication of that. The measures that China has taken on the Gaza situation, both in the region and at the United Nations, indicated that this will also be a major focus of China’s foreign policy moving forward.

In a world of increasing uncertainty, China remains an anchor of stability for humanity.