China's "legal diplomacy" in the face of decades of preferential treatment

Zenaan Harkness zen at
Thu Jul 16 03:05:15 PDT 2020

Chine has had WTO "developing nation" status for decades, has had the bulk of Western manufacturing literally shipped to China, and even under Obama spat in the face of the world:

   The Hague's 2016 Verdict Exposed Communist China's Predatory War On World Order
   Austin Bay via The Epoch Times,

      ..On July 12, 2016, The Hague’s international arbitral tribunal, relying on the 1982 U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea treaty (UNCLOS), issued a ruling supporting the Philippines’ claims that China had violated Filipino territory in the South China Sea by seizing islets and “sea features.” China had also plundered resources in the Philippines’ maritime Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

      Despite having signed the sea treaty (which meant accepting the arbitration process), the Chinese government callously ignored the verdict and disdained the court’s authority.

      UNCLOS codified the geophysical conditions and legal precedents establishing sovereign control of territorial waters and sovereign rights in the EEZ. It is an example of practical, peace-promoting diplomacy.

      China’s blunt rejection of the decision stunned the Filipino government and alerted other nations on the Pacific Rim. The Beijing regime not only broke a major treaty it had ratified but also openly maligned legal procedures created to promote peaceful resolution of international disputes. Beijing’s thuggish rebuke sent the message that Chinese whim backed by China’s enormous military and economic power determined sovereignty in the South China Sea.

      Chinese communist predatory behavior long predates 2016, but in retrospect, Beijing’s appalling reaction to the ruling clearly demonstrated the CCP could not be trusted to abide by even the most meticulously negotiated treaty. The CCP’s June 2020 decision to break the Sino-British Joint Declaration of 1984 and impose its authoritarian laws on Hong Kong reinforced the ugly lesson that treaties with communist China do not protect smaller nations and territories from Chinese theft and absorption. ...

   The WTO still considers China a 'developing nation.' Here's the big problem with that

      ..China is still considered a developing nation by the WTO a status it received when it joined decades ago.

      ..There is no official WTO classification as to which countries are "developing." This status is self-selected, based on politics more than law or economics, and can be contested. It is a controversial point that usually stays buried beneath the surface, but occasionally flares up into minor controversy.

   Most Favored Nation Status: Pros and Cons
   How It Lowers Your Shopping Bill

       Most-favored-nation (MFN) status is an economic position in which a country enjoys the best trade terms given by its trading partner. That means it receives the lowest tariffs, the fewest trade barriers, and the highest import quotas (or none at all). In other words, all MFN trade partners must be treated equally.

       .. In the U.S., it's more common to hear the term "permanent normal trade relations." This is simply another way to refer to a country with MFN status. 

       .. All 164 members of the WTO receive most-favored-nation status. That means they all receive the same trade benefits as all other members. The only exceptions are developing countries, regional trade areas, and customs unions.

       Developing countries receive preferential treatment without having to return it, so their economies can grow.

       .. China's MFN Status

       The United States gave China permanent MFN status in 2001, the same year that China became a WTO member. U.S. companies wanted to sell to the largest population in the world. As China's GDP grew, they thought, so would its consumer spending. ...

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