From the small news of the Chinese business: the name of the next “princess Huawei ” has now become a registered trademark. The name of the princess is Yao Xiwei, her European names are Anna and Annabelle, and this is registered. This is another daughter of the founder of the company, Ren Zhengfei, and another famous princess, Meng Wanzhou, whom they tried to extradite to the United States from Canada, is resting in her home country and is also doing well.
That is, this high-tech corporation, together with its owners, is now for China a national symbol of success, high-tech glamor and global superiority. But for the main competitor of the Celestial Empire, the United States, the same corporation is a symbol of an endless nightmare. And from America on this occasion, an evil growl is constantly heard, although sometimes a pessimistic groan.
We have before us two publications on this topic, two authors – a ferocious woman (published in the National Interest) and a gloomy man (Foreign Affairs). They approach the issue in different ways.
The woman, Diana Francis, says : the corporation in question is a weapon of Beijing, already two-thirds of countries buy its equipment for 5G networks, which become the “backbone” for the functioning of tomorrow’s world, filled with trillions of systems and mechanisms. This is a threat to all democracies. This is not a business, but a war, because Huawei operates through theft of technology and the strong backing of the Chinese government.
The question arises what to do. Diana says that Washington’s sanctions against the corporation, which began in 2017, are not enough, all these bans on the sale of its products in the United States, and then pressure on allies to force them to do the same. It is not enough either not to let into China any American goods and technologies that can be used by local innovative enterprises.
This is not enough, because a global intervention should be organized – a coalition of technologically advanced countries led by the United States, and it could create an “open, transparent” 5G operating system for the whole world, which would remove the Chinese competitor from the market.
And, she says, this is already happening – consultations are underway within the framework of old alliances (for example, the intelligence “Five Eyes” – the United States, Great Britain, Australia, Canada and New Zealand ) and Quad, which also includes Japan and India. But allies in the European Union, the G7 and other structures are also joining in.
Now let’s see how Jonathan Hillman approaches the case, one of those people who are trying in various research centers to figure out how to return American influence in Asia. He, of course, starts the conversation with the traditional five-minute hate against Huawei (this is mandatory), but then he says: all our sanctions do not work, the corporation feels great developing business in giant countries such as Brazil, Indonesia or Nigeria.
And then – his main idea: we work badly, we need to learn from the Chinese, from this corporation and others. Look at how they operate in developing countries, which are really developing (in contrast to the West), and the telecommunications business there is twice as large in turnover as in the “already developed” ones. And this despite the fact that half of humanity still lives without the Internet – because someone there will organize it in the near future. In general, the Chinese, with their tactics to work in low-income markets, but their rapid development, simply turned out to be smarter. Yes, after all, until 2017, they worked perfectly in the United States itself – but in the outback, and the local high-tech was losing competition to them.
Here we have an extremely interesting discussion, it concerns the future not only of innovation, but of any business on the planet in the foreseeable future. What principles will it develop? It is easy to see that the main accusation against the Chinese is that their government helps the global promotion of their companies.
But this is not a Chinese invention. It is rather Japanese and South Korean, this is how – with the support of the authorities, including cheap financing – the economic miracle began in these countries in the 1960s. Then exactly the same strategy was applied by a new wave of Asian tigers like Singapore or Malaysia. And then everywhere. So we can forget about the gloomy accusations against Beijing that it is promoting innovative authoritarianism around the world: here we are talking only about a successful combination of market mechanisms with state support that can work under any political system.
The standard accusations of technology theft by one and all Chinese people do not command respect either. It is believed, for example, that all the same Huawei successfully used some innovations of the Canadian Nortel. Okay, but what prevented the Canadians themselves or their wonderful southern neighbors from applying these developments the way the Chinese did – democracy and the “free market” prevented?
Let’s not go deep into discussions about how free of the state are any US corporations or their allies – this is an old story. But now a new one is developing, when a special model of public-private partnership is being proposed in the West, at least in the field of the most advanced technologies. And some thinkers consider it correct to create a virtual military-espionage closed system that develops and promotes these technologies, which means that these overseers will also control their application. That is, exactly what the Chinese are accused of (saying that they will keep their hand on the switch of the systems of tomorrow) must be done. Other thinkers say, in essence, the same thing: we need to borrow the Chinese model, in this case the model of market development. And do what the competitors do, because the way we work doesn’t work.
That is, the defeat of the West in terms of creating and promoting new generation technologies is an obvious fact, and this fact would even be boring if it were not for the streams of fierce or dreary eloquence of the losers that revive the picture.
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