Prof. Jeffrey Sachs: China is not a threat and enemy to the US

on Jun 11, 2024
  • Prof. Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University has a big warning to the US.
  • He believes that the US is moving in the wrong direction as it confronts China.
  • Sachs argues that China is not a threat to the United States.

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Professor Jeffrey Sachs has blasted the United States politicians for the ongoing tensions with China, the second-biggest economy in the world. 

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In an interview with Judge Andrew Napolitano, he argued that it was wrong for the US to continue criticising Beijing. 

His statement came at a time when tensions between the two countries have risen, leading to rising risks of war. Just last month, Biden unveiled new tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles and solar panels in a bid to protect its industries. 

The US has also banned the sale of certain advanced semiconductors to China, a move that has pushed the latter to unveil a $47 billion chip fund.

In a recent trip to China, Janet Yellen criticised Beijing for supporting Russia on its battle against Ukraine and for overproducing. The US has also passed a bill to ban TikTok for its perceived ties to Beijing. Also, the government passed the Uygur Forced Labor Prevention Act.

China has accused the US of hypocrisy and announced retaliatory measures. For example, it has barred government agencies from using Apple products. Most recently, it started a probe on polyoxymethylene copolymer imports.

In his statement, Jeffrey Sachs argued that the US’s attempts to contain China would fail. For one, he noted that China was a member of BRICS, a group that is becoming an alternative to the G7. 

Last year, other countries like Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, and the UAE became new members of the group. The new group will now be about 35% of the global GDP while the G7 accounts for about 26.4% of the world economy. 

Jeffrey Sachs argued that the US should be glad of China’s growth, which has lifted millions of people out of poverty. In the past few years, the country’s GDP per capita has jumped to over $13,000, from less than $300 in the 1970s.

Sachs believes that the US should change its policies by ending its participation in foreign wars. He argues that these wars have not benefited the US and that they have left it deeply in debt. Today, the government has over $34.6 trillion in public debt.

As the US-funded wars, China focused on boosting its industrial base, which has lowered its cost of manufacturing. 

Most importantly, Sachs believes that the US is facing a debt trap that will lead to substantial risks in the coming years. As I have written before, the country’s total debt is growing at a pace of $1 trillion every three months, an unsustainable pace. 

Sadly, there is no easy way out for the United States as both parties have focused on being tough to China. Biden retained Trump’s tariffs and expanded them. Trump has vowed to implement a 205 tariff on all Chinese imports, a move that will lead to higher prices. Besides, the recent tariffs have not helped to lower the deficit.

USA Economic