The modus operandi often adopted by China to make inroads into economically weaker nations, whether in Asia, Africa or Latin America, has been to strike deals with corrupt Heads of State. This enables Chinese companies to not only further their business interests in that country but the Chinese State to surreptitiously penetrate the nation’s polity, with the objective to ensure its long-term influence. The Himalayan nation of Nepal is emerging as a classic example of this Chinese machination where the ruling Nepal Communist Party, led by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has been seen to blatantly advance Chinese interests, to the extent that it has made many senior members of his party uncomfortable.
Paris and Beijing are intensifying contacts and initiatives aimed at defusing the effects of the diplomatic crisis that broke out between both countries in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, following “aggressive publications” issued by the Chinese embassy in Paris, denounced by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as fake news.
The Covid 19 pandemic exacerbates anti-Chinese resentment in the countries of Central Asia. But, despite the grumbling of the populations, the local governments, financially vulnerable with regard to Beijing, struggle to oppose Chinese Neo-Imperialism.
On April 16, three French senators, Christian Cambon, Olivier Cadic and Rachel Mazuire, all members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defense and the Armed Forces published a study tilted “Disinformation, Cyber attacks and cyber surveillance: The other COVID-19 war” that recommends for the Government to set up a cyber reaction force to fight against “false news” and respond to the strategy adopted by certain foreign powers to influence online readers.
While Taiwan has alerted the WHO to the emergence of the virus and the possibility of human-to-human transmission, several weeks before China, the UN specialized agency continues to boycott Taipei, at Beijing’s request.
Just as the world community has agreed that it needs to work jointly to overcome the challenges posed by the ongoing pandemic of Covid-19, consensus must also be reached quickly to jointly oppose China’s blatant disregard for global standards and its repeated attempts to distort the facts in order to circumvent international regulations.
A contract has recently been signed with Russian armaments companies to set up a maintenance and repair centre for S-400 ground-to-air defence systems in China.