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'Naked economic coercion': China raps potential US investment curbs

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin

Beijing has rapped Washington’s potential new restrictions on US firms’ abilities to invest in Chinese entities, accusing the US of “naked economic coercion”.

During a regular news briefing on Friday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that "the US is accustomed to politicizing, instrumentalizing, and weaponizing issues of trade and technology under the guise of national security,"

"This is naked economic coercion and technological bullying," he added.

Wang was referring to a US plan to restrict certain US outbound investments involving specific sensitive technology.

During a Thursday speech, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen sought to allay concerns about the new measures, saying that they were "motivated solely by our concerns about our security and values".

However, Beijing maintains the plans are intended to block its path to economic advancement.

"The real aim of the US is to deprive China of its right to development and safeguard its own hegemony and self-interest," Wang said Friday.

China’s tech sector has already been hit by existing measures imposed by Washington and its allies, with Chinese authorities doubling down on the need to move away from imports for key sectors such as semiconductors.

China, Russia seek win-win cooperation

In her speech, Yellen also touched on the China-Russia partnership, saying it was "essential" that Beijing refrains from providing Moscow with material support for the war in Ukraine.

When asked about Yellen's comments, Wang defended China's position on the conflict, comparing it with "certain countries practicing double standards and adding fuel to the fire".

"China and Russia have always adhered to the principles of non-alignment, non-confrontation, and non-targeting of third parties, and have developed a new type of major-country relationship featuring mutual respect, peaceful coexistence, and win-win cooperation," he said.

Over the past several months, the US has expressed concerns over the growing friendship between China and Russia, and claims that Beijing is mulling weapons sales to Russia to help it with the Ukraine war.

China has rejected US assertions and says the US is fueling the conflict in Ukraine by sending weapons worth billions of dollars to Kiev.

Beijing has also blamed the US and NATO for “provoking” Moscow over the Ukraine war and has condemned Western sanctions against Russia.

For its part, Russia has strongly backed China amid the recent tensions between Beijing and Washington over the US political and military interference in Taiwan.

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