Breakingviews – China’s Big Brother drafted into trade war



Pete Sweeney | Reuters

Breakingviews – China’s Big Brother drafted into trade war

HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) – China’s Big Brother is getting dragged into the trade war by Donald Trump. Export controls and sanctions are under consideration for companies whose technology helps Beijing monitor Muslim minorities. Despite the surprise of this U.S. administration weighing in on Chinese human rights issues at last, the policy could hit U.S. suppliers and further curb enthusiasm for related Chinese stocks.

Efforts by the People’s Republic to protect itself from internal threats have surged in recent years. Net domestic security spending reached nearly $200 billion in 2017, more than twice as much as a decade ago, according to an estimate by academic Adrian Zenz. It has concentrated on restive regions such as Xinjiang, where there have been violent incidents between the Muslim Uighur minority and immigrants from the ethnic Han majority. The United Nations has criticized policies including the detention of an estimated 1 million Uighur civilians. The Chinese government says it is fighting Islamist radicals and separatists.

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