Obama and Xi walking White House Photo/Pete Souza

Ein Überdenken der chinesisch-amerikanischen Beziehung

NEW HAVEN − Anfang Juli werden führende Regierungsvertreter der USA und Chinas in Peking zum sechsten Strategie- und Wirtschaftsdialog zusammenkommen. Angesichts der wachsenden Spannungen an einer Anzahl von Fronten – darunter der Cyber-Sicherheit, territorialen Streitigkeiten im Ost- und Südchinesischen Meer sowie der Währungspolitik – bietet der Gipfel Gelegenheit zur ernsthaften Neubetrachtung der Beziehungen zwischen den beiden mächtigsten Ländern der Welt.

Die USA und China sind in einer unbequemen Umarmung gefangen – dem wirtschaftlichen Gegenstück zu dem, was die Psychologen „Co-Dependenz“ nennen. Der Flirt der beiden begann Ende der 1970er Jahre, als China im Gefolge der Kulturrevolution am Rande einer Katastrophe stand und die USA in einer schmerzhaften Stagflation steckten. Verzweifelt um Wirtschaftswachstum bedacht, gingen die beiden Not leidenden Länder eine Vernunftehe ein.

China profitierte schnell von seinem exportorientierten Wirtschaftsmodell, das maßgeblich von Amerika als seiner größten Nachfragequelle abhängig war. Die USA ihrerseits profitierten, indem sie Billigwaren aus China bezogen, die einkommensschwachen Verbrauchern halfen, über die Runden zu kommen. Sie importierten darüber hinaus Ersparnisüberschüsse aus China, um die durch den nie dagewesenen Ausfall inländischer Ersparnisse entstandene Lücke zu füllen, wobei sich die defizitanfälligen USA Chinas unersättlichem Hunger nach US-Staatspapieren reichlich zu Nutze machten.

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