A top IT government official on Wednesday said China poses the biggest cyber threat to the U.S. Speaking at a cybersecurity summit, Federal Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) Grant Schneider said China has the “capacity and the capability and the intent” to work against the U.S. in cyberspace more so than other countries.
Espionage and counterespionage have been essential tools of statecraft for centuries, of course, and U.S. and Chinese intelligence agencies have been battling one another for decades. But what these recent cases suggest is that the intelligence war is escalating--that China has increased both the scope and the sophistication of its efforts to steal secrets from the U.S.
Hours after China announced retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods on Friday, President Donald Trump ordered U.S. companies to “start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies HOME and making your products in the USA.” The stakes are high: U.S. companies invested a total of $256 billion in China between 1990 and 2017, compared with $140 billion Chinese companies have invested in the United States, according to estimates by the Rhodium Group research institute.
China comes in second, and the European Union lags further behind. This order could change in coming years as China appears to be making more rapid progress than either the United States or the European Union. Nonetheless, when controlling for the size of the labor force in the three regions, the current U.S. lead becomes even larger, while China drops to third place, behind the European Union. This report also offers a range of policy recommendations to help each nation or region improve its AI capabilities.
Despite China’s bold AI initiative, the United States still leads in absolute terms. China comes in second, and the European Union lags further behind. This order could change in coming years as China appears to be making more rapid progress than either the United States or the European Union. Nonetheless, when controlling for the size of the labor force in the three regions, the current U.S. lead becomes even larger, while China drops to third place, behind the European Union.
A common mistake in Washington is thinking about U.S.-China competition through a Cold War mentality that views Beijing as an adversary that we can contain and isolate like the Soviet Union. The United States and China are economically intertwined in a way that America and the Soviet Union never were and that America and Russia are not today. Regardless of presidential tweets saying that "we don't need China" andthatU.S. companies should find alternative markets, decoupling from China in the global economy is simply unrealistic and would be in neither country’s interest.
Huawei is facing a “life or death crisis” amid continued pressure from the U.S. government, its founder and CEO told employees, as he laid out a strategy for the Chinese telecommunications giant going forward. In a memo to employees of Huawei’s networking division seen by CNBC, Ren Zhengfei described the company’s current situation as a “battle.”
...even if there are significant breakthroughs on the trade front -- and that’s a very big “if” -- it will do little to change the anti-China mood in Washington. Partisan rancor and the president’s Twitter musings may get the headlines, but there is broad agreement in the nation’s capital that the Sino-U.S. relationship has fundamentally changed.
Underscoring the complexity of the U.S.-China trade relationship, careful observers will notice that there are more than two sides vying for influence at the table as negotiations continue in search of a possible deal. In fact, when it comes to the most important strategic question at the very heart of the dispute--what to do about China’s mercantilist campaign to dominate global markets for key advanced technologies--there are at least three contending positions on the U.S. side alone.
Silicon Valley is belatedly waking up to the fact that China systematically extracts the most advanced technology from the west, using both legal and nefarious means. So far, the US and European response has been entirely defensive. The US government tightened up laws last year to make it tougher for China to invest in our most advanced technologies. Germany and the UK are also increasingly wary of Chinese investment.