China's response to the U.S. Senate's proposed 'Strategic Competition Act'

The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee is preparing to discuss on a bipartisan bill on Wednesday that aims to counter China’s global influence and allocate more than $1 billion to strengthen U.S. influence.

The 280-page bill addresses U.S. economic competition with China, as well as “humanitarian and democratic values”, including new sanctions on China over Xinjiang and Hong Kong.

The Strategic Competition Act of 2021 asks for $655 million from 2022-2026 to fund foreign militaries, and $450 million for the Indo-Pacific Maritime Security Initiative which includes Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh.

The bill also includes:

* $300 million to counter Chinese influence around the world.
* $100 million to promote U.S. exports in developing markets through investments in telecommunications and digital infrastructure.
* $75 million to help nations in the Indo-Pacific as a counterweight to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
* $15 million to help U.S. companies leave the Chinese market

China has opposed the bill and called for U.S. senators to do more to help the stable development of China-U.S. relations.

The global influence of a country comes from dealing with its own issues well, and providing public good to the world, China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying has said.

By the end of 2020, China brought locally transmitted COVID-19 cases to near zero, became the only major economy with positive economic growth, and provided vaccines to other countries, Hua added.

In the meantime, the U.S. has waged wars around the world, witnessed over half a million American deaths during the pandemic, has seen increasing racism against the African Americans and Asian Americans, experienced frequent mass shootings, and has not been open to sharing its COVID-19 vaccines, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian has also said.

China urges the U.S. to solve its own problems, instead of confronting Beijing, Chinese senior diplomat Yang Jiechi said during the talks with the U.S. in Alaska in March.

China’s goal is not to surpass the U.S. on global influence, but to become a better China that can serve its people in a better way, Hua has said.

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