Will the EU start a trade war with China over Lithuania: thoughts and facts


One of the most important economic News The past year 2021 can be called the imposition of sanctions by China against Lithuania. Restrictive measures are not legally formalized, but in fact they have been in effect for a long time. This is a very important precedent, since earlier it was only the collective West that imposed sanctions on objectionable countries, to which they expressed their "concerns". Vilnius is sounding the alarm and is calling for a united Europe to fight against the Celestial Empire, but so far it has kept silent with displeasure. Is a trade war between the EU and China over Lithuania even possible? Let's present thoughts and facts on this subject.


First of all, it should be noted that Lithuania itself is to blame. At first, the Lithuanian authorities, without consulting with any of the European allies, unilaterally withdrew from the 17 + 1 initiative of the Chinese New Silk Road. They also opposed the arrival of Chinese investments in the port of Klaipeda, which would allegedly be unsafe, since it is used by the NATO bloc. Then, in protest against human rights violations in the PRC, Vilnius was the only one to refuse to send its diplomats to the Beijing Olympics, boycotting the international sporting event. Lithuania then imposed sanctions on Chinese officials for allegedly persecuting Uighurs. The last straw in China's patience was the opening of Taiwan's official representation in this annoying little Baltic republic, de facto recognizing its independence from mainland China.

In response, Beijing simply excluded Lithuania from its customs system, thereby blocking the transit of its goods. In addition to this, China refused to accept products made in Lithuania, which greatly worried the German industrial enterprises that have their factories in this country. This is, for example, the company Continental, which produces car tires and spare parts. The German-Baltic Chamber of Commerce was forced to respond to the problem by sending a letter to the Lithuanian government notifying:

If the problem of relations between Vilnius and Beijing is not resolved, the German factories in Lithuania may be closed.

There are about a dozen of those in this Baltic republic, which can complete the process of its deindustrialization. In Vilnius, they demand support from the European Union, believing that the situation concerns not only Lithuania, but the entire world trade system based on Western rules of the game. But will this consolidated assistance be provided by the EU?

The question is very ambiguous. On the one hand, Lithuania really ran into itself, literally begging for these problems. China is very large, and there are few people in Europe who want to get involved with sanctions against it. On the other hand, dissatisfaction with this very Chinese economic power is constantly growing, and the actual imposition of sanctions by Beijing against a "civilized" European country may be the last straw.

The first "crusade" against China was announced by President Donald Trump. His isolationist vision of America First has clashed with China's Made in China 2025. Beijing is not content to be the "world's workshop" to become a global technology leader. The Chinese bought all possible Technology around the world, developed their own through active government subsidies. The transformation of the Celestial Empire into a leading technological leader is a matter of the near future. Republican Donald Trump unleashed a real trade war against China, but did not achieve a convincing result. He was replaced by Democrat Joe Biden, from whom one could expect a softening of approaches, but this never happened. China has been declared America's "number one" enemy along with Russia.

China's expansion also worries Europe in the same way. The German weekly Focus wrote the following about this:

China wants to wrest technological leadership from the West by 2025, and by all means, including dishonest ones.


The Federal Association of German Industry (BDI) published an entire program in 2019 called “Partner and System Competitor. How do we deal with China's state-run economy?" It outlined the concerns and demands of the German industrialists to Berlin and Brussels on 23 pages.

Among them were claims that Western business is being actively discriminated against in China, where it is forced to create joint ventures, transfer technology to the Chinese, and is deprived of free access to government orders. Foreign companies face various restrictions, high duties and non-tariff barriers. At the same time, local companies are subsidized and strongly supported by the state. German industrialists are outraged that the state in China not only regulates, but is itself a direct participant in economic processes, which directly contradicts the liberal spirit of the free market. The paper concludes that there has actually been a collision between two competing systems.

But this is already serious. China not only created its own alternative economic system, and a very effective one, but also began its expansion outward, setting its own rules for others. Lithuania is only the first stone, a trial one. Beijing is carefully watching how Europe will react, and will draw their own conclusions about the extent of what is permitted. At the same time, everything is done very carefully, officially anti-Lithuanian sanctions have not even been introduced so that there is no reason for official responses.

Now the word for the EU. Staying silent and doing nothing would be a big mistake.
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  1. Jacques sekavar Offline Jacques sekavar
    Jacques sekavar (Jacques Sekavar) 15 January 2022 13: 23
    +5
    The goal of the 14th Five-Year Plan is to continue the policy of reforms and openness, to build a powerful socialist state on the basis of sustainable economic development and technological independence.
    Already today, the PRC trains the most specialists, leads in the registration of patents, production of means of production, works in the field of artificial intelligence, explores space, thermonuclear fusion and other science-intensive areas, the standard of living of the population is rapidly growing, and at the same time patriotism and pride in their country .
    A state that has a fortress in itself will not collapse.
    Glory to the Communist Party, under whose leadership the People's Republic of China is following the Leninist course of building Socialism.
  2. Sergeyjluf Offline Sergeyjluf
    Sergeyjluf (Sergei) 15 January 2022 13: 36
    +2
    Chinese "consumer goods" are already of better quality than European ones! And Europe is cornered, now it is impossible to create goods for 2-3 years, simulating the purchasing power of the people to buy more and more new "old" goods. The European market is oversaturated! Therefore, the war of "Consumer goods" between Europe and China is inevitable!
    1. Pandiurin Offline Pandiurin
      Pandiurin (Pandiurin) 15 January 2022 14: 47
      +1
      Quote: Sergejluf
      Chinese "consumer goods" are already of better quality than European ones! And Europe is cornered, now it is impossible to create goods for 2-3 years, simulating the purchasing power of the people to buy more and more new "old" goods. The European market is oversaturated! Therefore, the war of "Consumer goods" between Europe and China is inevitable!

      Rather, not a war of consumer goods itself, but retail chains and brand promotion.

      There is a German company (esco) with a rather expensive and in the past with a very decent quality. Manufactured in China, but there is a strong decline in quality both in terms of technological solutions and types of materials, both in terms of the quality of materials and workmanship.
      As a result, a sharp discrepancy between the price and the level of shoes.

      The Chinese certainly have their own brands who are interested in gaining a good reputation and are responsible for quality. But we need to move to foreign markets.
  3. 123 Offline 123
    123 (123) 15 January 2022 14: 13
    +1
    Whether the EU starts a trade war with China or not is not so important. They are both competitors and have grown together economically just like China and the United States, but so far not so much, which means that the contradictions are not so sharp. We watch how they squabble and take the opportunity to promote our interests. While the "eastern cordon sanitaire" is raging, we're doing business. Everything that does not go through the Baltics will go through Russia. The process is going in the right direction, judging by the anguish and lamentations of the Polish lords about the injustice of the owner.

    The Polish portal Kresy.pl captures economic realities that are gloomy for Poland: the Chinese megaproject "New Silk Road" bypasses the territory of Poland: in the north - through the Russian Kaliningrad region, and soon in the south - through Hungary.

    “Last year, regular cargo transportation began on the section of the New Silk Road called the Baltic Sea Bridge, which starts in the port of Kaliningrad and ends in the German port of Mukran. This year, about 60 TEUs (standard containers) are expected to be handled at Mukran. Containers from China arrive at the port of Kaliningrad by rail, from where they are transported to Mukran by rail ferries. Mukran is currently the main transshipment point for containers from Xi'an in our region. From here they continue on to Karlshamn in Sweden and Hull in the UK. It is also worth noting that it was from the port of Mukran that the construction of the Nord Stream and Nord Stream 000 gas pipelines was coordinated and operated. However, the German port was not included in any of the US sanctions lists.”

    https://eadaily.com/ru/news/2021/12/21/novyy-shyolkovyy-put-obhodit-polshu-cherez-kaliningrad-a-skoro-cherez-vengriyu

    The Balts will also feel all this in their own skin.
    By the way, the link is a curious look at the problem of interstate relations.
    https://aftershock.news/?q=node/1052934
  4. Rusa Offline Rusa
    Rusa 15 January 2022 15: 31
    +1
    Lithuania has learned a good lesson, and with it the European Union.
    Being vassals of Washington is fraught with serious consequences,
    therefore we should not climb on their rampage.
  5. Poligraf Poligrafovich (Vadim Vorobyov) 15 January 2022 17: 04
    +2
    ... The Chinese are handsome!!! I respect ... Simple, without "concern" they threw the Lithuanians to the very tomatoes ... And all because the Chinese "friends" do not have real estate, children, bills over the hill and their "elite" works for their country, unlike the Russian ...
    1. Vermont Offline Vermont
      Vermont (Aslan Tsoutiev) 16 January 2022 05: 41
      0
      Quote: Polygraph Poligrafovich
      The Chinese are beautiful!!! I respect ... Simple, without "concern" they threw the Lithuanians to the very tomatoes ... And all because the Chinese "friends" have no real estate, children, bills over the hill and their "elite" works for their country, unlike the Russian ...

      Well, firstly, their "elite" has money and real estate and families live abroad as long as they want. You go around the world to good places and now find places where rich Chinese do not live now with villas, houses, money. Secondly, China does not have such a system of suppression and robbery of business by the authorities, as in Russia. And there is no broken and devastated country (outside of Moscow), as in Russia. That is why Russian oligarchs live abroad, and not in Russia. In China, on the contrary, there is a huge support for their national business. And no one there, neither the officials, nor the "gold chasers" from among Putin's friends, take away the business and impose "kickbacks" on it. And the whole country is built on budget money. And for free education, an enormous amount of money is allocated from the budget, and they are not laid out in the pockets of Putin's friends. Therefore, their "elite" does not run anywhere from the country, here you are right. Why should they run? And there is no need to blame our Russian "elite" for saying that they are "not patriotic" .... Of course, they are not sugar, but you yourself become so "patriotic" here in such conditions, then we'll see.
    2. Ulysses Offline Ulysses
      Ulysses (Alexey) 16 January 2022 18: 12
      +2
      And all because the Chinese "friends" do not have real estate, children, bills over the hill and their "elite" works for their country, unlike the Russian one ...

      A myth cultivated by people who do not understand anything about the "socialist Chinese economy."
      Or deliberately trying to mislead gullible adherents.

      Slightly less than half of the world's 2755 billionaires are citizens of the United States or China.
      There are 1058 dollar billionaires in China, according to Hurun, an increase of 259 over the past year.

      PS And I don't need to tell stories about the "correct socialist dollar billionaires" who think about ordinary Chinese workers day and night.
      Having no real estate, bills over the hill and other nishtyakov. laughing
      The nature of capital is well spelled out by K. Marx.
      The only question is how much the state is able to control their Wishlist ..
  6. Sergey Latyshev Offline Sergey Latyshev
    Sergey Latyshev (Serge) 15 January 2022 17: 29
    0
    Trade wars are commonplace.

    And 123 just recently posted a link to the econ. orientation, where 2 Baltic countries (I don’t remember which ones) have one of the highest industrial growth rates in the world ...
    Probably, that site does not read our media ...
  7. gorskova.ir Offline gorskova.ir
    gorskova.ir (Irina Gorskova) 15 January 2022 19: 05
    +2
    Trump tried for the United States, returning production and, therefore, taxes "home." What is Lithuania? And what does the fight against China mean for Europe? She (I won’t even talk about Lithuania. With their strange actions they themselves are driving themselves into a hole) at the behest of their leaders, refusing to enter into profitable gas contracts with the Russian Federation, is also driving themselves into the same hole. And at the same time, for some reason, she is embittered at Russia, and not at her those protesters who suddenly ascended to the post of the Foreign Ministry. Not on the strange ESovtsev who, for the sake of overseas, is pushing this Europe into hunger, cold, stopping enterprises .... So what does Russia have to do with it?
    1. Vermont Offline Vermont
      Vermont (Aslan Tsoutiev) 16 January 2022 06: 00
      -2
      Quote: gorskova.ir
      What is Lithuania? And what does the fight against China mean for Europe? She (I won’t even talk about Lithuania. With their strange actions they themselves are driving themselves into a hole) at the behest of their leaders, refusing to enter into profitable gas contracts with the Russian Federation, is also driving themselves into the same hole. And at the same time, for some reason, she is embittered at Russia, and not at her those protesters who suddenly ascended to the post of the Foreign Ministry. Not on the strange ESovtsev who, for the sake of overseas, is pushing this Europe into hunger, cold, stopping enterprises .... So what does Russia have to do with it?

      Yes, since China is so strong, everyone should “lie down” under him, kiss him on the ass. And where are you going? Otherwise, "hunger, cold, stoppage of enterprises, death" .... There are some masters in the world, while others are slaves. Do nothing, we will live like this.
  8. boriz Offline boriz
    boriz (boriz) 15 January 2022 23: 59
    +1
    Now the word for the EU. Staying silent and doing nothing would be a big mistake.

    So they already said their word last year. Lithuania is being merged.
    "You don't need a violinist, dear." (WITH)

    As the German-Baltic Chamber of Commerce reported in a letter to the Lithuanian government, German industrialists are experiencing "great concern" due to the deterioration of relations between Vilnius and Beijing.

    Manufacturers of peat, lasers and auto components cannot receive components from China and export their products to China due to restrictions imposed by China on Lithuania.
    If the problem of relations between Vilnius and Beijing is not resolved, German factories in Lithuania could be closed, the Chamber of Commerce has warned.

    That's all. Topic closed.
    While the EU bureaucracy is inflated there ...
    Germany cannot wait. Just business, nothing personal.
  9. Demonlivi Offline Demonlivi
    Demonlivi (Dima) 16 January 2022 11: 36
    0
    The eyes are not good!
  10. Alsur Offline Alsur
    Alsur (Alexey) 19 January 2022 08: 04
    +1
    Quote: Polygraph Poligrafovich
    ... The Chinese are handsome!!! I respect ... Simple, without "concern" they threw the Lithuanians to the very tomatoes ... And all because the Chinese "friends" do not have real estate, children, bills over the hill and their "elite" works for their country, unlike the Russian ...

    Yes, the Chinese have everything, the Chinese diaspora in the United States is large.