The United States has “far more to gain from cooperation with China and other countries than from confrontation,” a renowned American economist has said.

U.S. President Joe Biden’s “foreign policy with China should begin with a search for cooperation rather than a presumption of conflict,” said Jeffrey David Sachs, an economics professor at Columbia University in his recent article Why the U.S. Should Pursue Cooperation with China.

“Cooperation is not cowardice, as American conservatives repeatedly claim. Both the U.S. and China have much to gain from it: peace, expanded markets, accelerated technological progress, the avoidance of a new arms race, progress against COVID-19, a robust global jobs recovery, and a shared effort against climate change,” said Sachs in the article.

Noting that the recent moves of U.S. foreign policy, such as returning to the Paris climate agreement and World Health Organization, are “hugely positive and admirable steps,” Sachs said. However, “Biden’s early foreign policy pronouncements vis-a-vis China and U.S. leadership are problematic,” he noted.

“The U.S. may view itself as being in a long-term ideological struggle with China, but the feeling is not mutual,” the economist said.

During the past four years, China-U.S. relations deteriorated as the previous U.S. administration of President Donald Trump launched a trade war against China, groundlessly blamed Beijing for the pandemic, erected barriers to Chinese diplomats, journalists working and students studying on its soil, and even interfered with China’s internal affairs.

However, Beijing has exercised restraint and repeatedly stated that China is committed to developing a China-U.S. relationship that features no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation.

Stressing China’s stance as seeking global cooperation, peaceful coexistence and a new type of international relations, Sachs said that “U.S. diplomacy would be wise to aim for engagement with China in these areas.”

“Today’s hostile rhetoric risks creating a self-fulfilling prophecy,” he said, referring to ideological prejudice.

“With reduced global tensions, Biden could direct the administration’s efforts toward overcoming the inequality, racism, and distrust that put Trump in power in 2016 and still dangerously divides American society,” he said. 


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