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UK allies baffled by red carpet treatment for Xi

  • Author:naky
  • Source:www.diecastingpartsupplier.com
  • Release on:2015-10-21
George Osborne, the chancellor, announced last month that he wanted to “take a risk” with Britain’s relationship with China. As Xi Jinping, Chinese president, heads for London at the start of a lavish four-day state visit, the extent of that risk will come under the international spotlight.

In what is being seen in other western capitals as an unprecedented kowtow, almost every aspect of the British state will be thrown open to Mr Xi: Buckingham Palace, 10 Downing Street, Chequers, the Palace of Westminster — even the country’s critical infrastructure, including nuclear power.
Britain’s traditional allies regard this behaviour as bizarre at best and craven and dangerous at worst, while old China hands at the Foreign Office are in despair.

A senior adviser to US policymakers described the UK as “the only place where China is truly influential right now, because they are so desperate for Chinese investment”.
Mr Osborne and David Cameron, prime minister, see China as a big potential source of investment for Britain’s creaking infrastructure and for help in funding the transformation of northern England, particularly Manchester, into a second global hub alongside London.

One of the biggest frustrations for western governments revolves around Britain’s decision to avoid any mention of the Communist Party’s human rights record.
Some have argued that Britain’s commercial relations with China were not affected by this diplomatic chill, but Mr Osborne and Mr Cameron drew the opposite lesson. They are set on removing all obstacles to what they hope will be a “golden decade” in relations between the two countries, making Britain China’s “number one partner”.

In 2014, mainland China was Britain’s sixth-largest export market, just ahead of Belgium and Luxembourg but well behind allies such as the US, France and Germany, which have been upset by London’s policy towards China.
Mr Osborne knows the UK’s courting of China is infuriating western allies including Washington, but that is part of the strategy. Beijing notes with approval Britain’s willingness to make a strategic pivot to Asia. It is clearly a risk, but the chancellor believes he will be vindicated.