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What Will the Relationship Between the U.S & China Likely Look Like Under the Biden Administration?

With Joe Biden announced as president-elect, many Chinese students’ main concern remains the relation between U.S. and China. Here is a quick summary of Biden’s policies related to China and what most likely will be his approach with China for the next four years. 

The campaign indicates a similar view as Trump’s administration on China as “a disruptive competitor.” Therefore, the administration is likely to maintain the current economic hard stance on China. The Biden administration may seek to increase American-government backed businesses to compete with China globally. The attempt to curb China’s economic power and influence may maintain existing tension between the two countries. 

For instance, Biden’s team demonstrates the desire to expand highly competitive fields such as 5G to curb Chinese influence and ensure the U.S. remains competitive in these growing sectors. The administration may seek to focus more on domestic products and reduce the existing dependence on Chinese-produced goods and services. 

The Biden administration diverges from Trump’s administration on human rights offenses. In contrast to Trump’s disinterest in human rights, the Biden administration may approach the issue by working with allies to push China and prevent its advances. 

On the other hand, Biden has different views regarding tariffs and how to confront China’s growing global influence. Biden’s advisers believed that tariffs are self-destructive on U.S. manufacture and production and will likely reduce the tariffs. The new administration will also attempt to contain China by working with U.S. allies as collective leverage against China’s growing influence and reducing China’s dependency on goods. 

Scholars and negotiators also believe that Biden will follow a path similar to that of Obama’s administration than Trump’s administration. While the new administration is unlikely to roll back the tariffs, Biden’s administration will most likely renegotiate terms and impose more diplomatic conversations with China on trade and foreign policies.

Regardless, Biden’s administration will most likely maintain America’s tough stance on China, as the relationship between the two nations continues into a tense period.

Lily Cai

Columbia Barnard '23

Lily is a sophomore at Barnard College, intending to double major in economics and computer science. Apart from school, she loves trying out new food and cuisines. She also enjoys listening to music, reading books, and watching Netflix. Lily would love to meet new people and feel free to reach out to her!
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