China’s ambassador to South Africa took out a half-page ad in South Africa’s biggest financial newspaper to attack U.S. President Donald Trump and his stance on global trade.
The ad in the Business Day newspaper is part of a Chinese campaign to have the country’s ambassadors around the world speak out against the U.S. in the midst of the U.S.-China trade war.
Lin Songtian, the Chinese ambassador to South Africa, paid for an article titled “Voice of China” in the newspaper. Lin said that Trump’s “capriciousness” and “bullying” by the U.S. would drive the world into a “severe recession”, according to Bloomberg.
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Since March 2018, the U.S. has imposed tariffs on $550 billion worth of Chinese products, and China has retaliated with tariffs on around $185 billion worth of U.S. goods.
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The trade war continues as Trump accuses China of unfair trading practices and intellectual property theft. China believes the U.S. is trying to slow its rise as a global economic superpower.
“The Chinese culture emphasizes that ‘gentlemen keep their words.’ Honoring the promises and commitments is the basic ethical code and requirement for state leaders and businessmen,” Lin said in the editorial, which was also published in The Star.
“The president of the U.S. runs his country according to his own will, dictates the world through Twitter and changes his position overnight,” he added.
“The U.S. insisting on escalating the trade frictions with China will harm the common interests of all people around the world and no one can escape,” the ambassador said. “The U.S. clings to the winner-takes-all law of the jungle.”
The ad went on to suggest that Trump’s unpredictable nature is damaging the U.S.’s reputation globally.
“Even God doesn’t know what he will do tomorrow,” Lin said. “Such a U.S. model of democracy has become the laughing stock of all people around the world.”
The trade war between the U.S. and China is impacting emerging markets. South African stocks were particularly hard-hit in August.