Xi isn’t destroying China’s economy – he’s changing it — RT World News

Media commentary that gleefully announces the end of China's rise fails to take into account the global realities to which Beijing is effectively adapting.

by Timur FomenkoPolitical analyst

If there is one completely unoriginal thought about China present in the mainstream media today, it is the idea that the Chinese economy has been destroyed, and that Xi Jinping's policies are to blame.

Such commentary, pushed out by almost every major media outlet on a weekly basis, often advances the narrative “end” Of the rise of China, it is often talked about “drop” It places the responsibility squarely on Xi Jinping, who has supposedly ended China's open and prosperous dynamism in favor of increasingly centralized authoritarian rule and a return to communist basics.

Such an article was prompted this week by the Washington Post editorial board, In a piece titled “Xi is destroying China's economy. This is bad for the United States.”. The article was not original in its premise, stating the above argument largely word for word. When this argument is pushed, it invariably ignores the broader context that the global economy is in dire straits, as well as the most pressing elephant in the room, which is that American foreign policy has been deliberately harmful, if not downright hostile, to the world's economic prospects as a country. . all.

The idea of ​​this narrative is to push the psychological warfare aspect that China is failing to dampen corporate optimism, undermine the Chinese economy, and thus advance American foreign policy goals. This deliberately highlights the geopolitical, economic, and domestic considerations that have all led to China's change in strategy and stance. It's easy to condemn “Xi Jinping's authoritarian rule” In cliché and blaming him for everything that went wrong is obvious, but what is more difficult is to draw an assessment of the reasons why the internal and external environment in China today is not the same as it was ten years ago.

First, what is always overlooked is that Xi Jinping deliberately changed the structure of the Chinese economy in order to end the growth boom that relied solely on real estate and debt. Newspapers love to talk about “real estate crisis” But can you imagine the scale of the problem if previous policies continued and China pushed towards obscene 10% growth targets based on an explosion of debt? Xi Jinping ended that and began a deleveraging process that deliberately slowed China's economic growth to about 6% when he took power. Why? Because debt is not a sustainable mechanism, his policy was literally aimed at pushing the real estate industry into a managed recession, even if it had short-term repercussions.

Second, Xi Jinping's policy has been to reinvent the Chinese economy to meet the challenges ahead by transforming it from a low-export, booming real estate economy into a cutting-edge technological powerhouse. Instead of aimlessly investing in local governments' real estate boom, China has redirected state funds toward building high-value industries, including renewable energy, computing, semiconductors, automobiles, and aviation, among others. It is primarily this attempt to become the global technological leader (by default in terms of volume) that has provoked a backlash from the United States on the economic level, thus attempting to cripple China's technological progress through export controls, which in reality show little Evidence. the job.

In addition, the global economic environment in which China operates has changed. The United States has ended its long-standing policy of open economic integration in favor of protectionist measures, alignment between blocs, and geographic politicization of supply chains. It, in turn, has created geopolitical conflicts with Russia and China and demanded that its allies cut or reduce economic ties with the targeted countries. In doing so, the United States has also attacked Beijing on a number of fronts using issues such as Xinjiang, Tibet, Taiwan, and Hong Kong as weapons to smear China's image, implement sanctions, and of course an all-out campaign of negative propaganda to create uncertainty and destroy optimism about China's rise.

These policies certainly have consequences for Beijing, making the country feel less safe and more suspicious, and thus less open to the outside world. This is not so much a potential accusation against Xi Jinping as a structural reality of politics. The CIA, for example, is relentless in trying to consolidate its presence In China, but if China arrests someone or links them to espionage, the media will respond by describing Beijing as paranoid, insecure, and coercive, demonstrating how this narrative will distort the country no matter what. However, the point remains that growth in this environment represents a greater challenge for China than it did before. New challenges create new policies, and when the mainstream media pretends that Xi is the instigator of all change “spoil” China's opportunities simply lie on multiple levels. It is a multi-faceted psychological warfare campaign that chooses simple explanations rather than telling you the bigger picture of why China is changing.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of RT.

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