Journalists trying to understand the complex relationship between the United States and China turned to Randal Phillips, a Mintz Group partner and head of its Asia operations, for clarity.
The articles were following up on the first summit between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, at Mar-a-Lago. A Washington Post column by Fred Hiatt, the newspaper’s editorial page editor, made the point that for decades the Chinese have pressured western companies to share sensitive technologies and barred foreign firms from competing in China – even as U.S. presidents avoided confronting Beijing’s predatory behavior.
Hiatt pointed out that U.S. business executives hope Trump will promote a balanced policy that holds China accountable for its actions. The column quoted Phillips as saying that “the solution has to be some combination of offense and defense…China has to face some consequence.”
Meanwhile, a Reuters article that made some of the same points added that the current administration has reached some early accords with the Xi team to open Chinese markets to a few U.S. companies.
Reuters said: “Randal Phillips, Mintz Group’s Beijing-based managing partner for Asia, said that Washington was too focused on selling more to China and should instead seek to address structural imbalances created by Chinese industrial policies and barriers to investment. ‘That’s going to be the challenge, and hopefully the Trump administration doesn’t start declaring victory,’ he said.”