From Brad Hoppmann: When it comes to China, it’s tough to get a consistent read on the president-elect.
Throughout the campaign, Donald Trump used China as a whipping boy. He criticized the country’s trade practices as unfair. And he blamed much of middle America’s economic angst on “really bad trade deals.”
He also made a lot of noise about China’s “currency manipulation.” As such, he accused policymakers there of rigging the game in favor of their exports and against U.S. imports.
Yet the president-elect’s campaign rhetoric didn’t just fade after his election victory.
We know this based on the continued verbiage against China, including the mention of steep tariffs on Chinese goods. Then there was the acceptance of the congratulatory call from Taiwan’s president, a move that represented a diplomatic breach of etiquette from the so-called “one-China” policy.
Then there was the biggest move — the creation of the White House National Trade Council, headed by outspoken China critic Peter Navarro. Mr. Navarro is an economist, and the author of “Death by China,” a book eminently critical of China’s trade practices.
So, what should we make of the president-elect’s China posture followed by his seeming embrace Tuesday of the most well-known, as well as the richest, business leader in China — Jack Ma of Alibaba (BABA)?
|Image credit: World Economic Forum|
In what the president-elect described as a “great meeting” yesterday at Trump Tower, the Alibaba executive chairman and Donald Trump discussed 1 million new U.S. jobs.
According to a CNBC report:
Ma said that Alibaba’s expansion would focus on products like garments, wine and fruits, with a special focus on trade between the American Midwest and southeast Asia.
“We’re focused on small business,” Ma told reporters. “We specifically talked about … supporting 1 million small businesses, especially in the Midwest of America. Small businesses on the platform selling products — agriculture products and America services — to China and Asia, because we’re pretty big in Asia.”
The willingness of Donald Trump to speak with the face of Chinese business is interesting, confusing …
And ultimately, I think, very encouraging.
It’s interesting, because given the blatant opposition to China and its trade policies, you might suspect that Mr. Trump wouldn’t want to be seen speaking to Mr. Ma in any type of collaborative way.
Of course, Mr. Ma isn’t a Chinese policymaker, so the analogy isn’t quite appropriate. Still, Ma does represent Chinese business success, and the new era of Chinese capitalism.
|BABA shares are already up 10.1% in 2017, and up 36.6% year-over-year.|
Moreover, Mr. Ma and Alibaba both have benefited mightily from China’s trade policies — and that makes the meeting more than just a bit confusing.
Yet what is encouraging about the meeting between President-elect Trump and Jack Ma is that it represents a sort of “end around” in the communications department.
A meeting between two business/world leaders discussing job creation now is a sort of proxy for diplomacy … and to me that’s a positive development.
What’s also a positive about this meeting is that it might just put China on notice that things are going to be very different.
In an op-ed on the subject for CNBC, senior columnist Jake Novak described the situation in the following fashion:
Ma … represents something much more dangerous to China than Taiwan ever could: an idea. In this case, the idea of individualism.
And the fact that Ma and Trump discussed the even more individualistic topic of global small business entrepreneurship puts an exclamation point on it all.
That, to me, is very encouraging. It shows that Donald Trump might just be able to shrewdly connect with leaders outside the traditional political realm to improve relations between countries.
If this can be accomplished, I’ll be among the first to offer congratulations.
The iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index ETF (NYSE:FXI) rose $0.12 (+0.33%) in premarket trading Wednesday. Year-to-date, FXI has gained 4.49%, versus a 1.31% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.
This article is brought to you courtesy of Uncommon Wisdom Daily.
Trump Feel Good Financial Narrative Crumbling - Greg Hunter, Craig Hemke Video
Trump Gives Mexico Extraordinary Refugee Surprise
The End of YouTube: The Apocalypse With "We Are Change" _Tim Pool
Three Events Collide On April 26th—Two Drills and An Emergency Trump Meeting—What’s Up?
Ryan, McConnell to Trump: "You f***ed Up, You Trusted Us"
103,000 Entitled Muslims in Michigan Just Woke up to Nasty Surprise From Pissed Off Citizens
FBI Reopens Hillary Clinton Investigation
This Could Save Your Job, House and Children - Emergency Call to Action
This Doctor Delivers the Best Explanation and Treatment for Alzheimer’s
Next One Out? Sean Hannity Under Attack as Fox News Continues its War Against Conservatives
Why Earth’s Winds are Changing with Tornadoes, Waterspouts & Plasma Lightning Intensifying
Elite Rituals You Need To Know, Child Drag Queen Hour & Giraffe Baby Live
BART Takeover Robbery: 40 to 60 Teens Swarm Train, Rob Weekend Riders
Iran's Nuclear Weapons Program: On Course, Underground, Uninspected
An Angry Canada Responds To Trump’s Lumber Tariff… And What It Means For The Economy
“Mother Earth will swallow you, lay your body down”
North Korea stages massive artillery drill. US nuclear sub docks in South
UFO - Corpuscular Ship..24.April.2017 (Video)
Chilling Ghost Apparition Caught on Tape
Curcumin outperforms anti-inflammatory drug for rheumatoid arthritis relief
It’s Trump That Has the Real “PizzaGate” Problem
Tuesday Night Acoustic Guitar Excellence: Trevor Gordon Hall, "Midnight and Raining"
French Mayor Fined for ‘Too Many Muslim Children’ Comment
What Angels Need
Group of Gorillas Approach Man in Ugandan Forest
Trump Comparisons to Ronald Reagan Aren’t Always a Good Thing