Diplomatic Briefing

Your exclusive news aggregator handpicked daily!

Archive for July 25, 2022

Newsline: China’s ambassador to South Korea voices concern over US-led chip alliance as “external interference”

The Chinese ambassador to South Korea on Monday met a lawmaker there who has advocated a chip alliance with the US, Japan and Taiwan, in a sign that Beijing is stepping up its efforts to dissuade its neighbour from joining the US-initiated alliance. Ambassador Xing Haiming told Yang Hyang-ja, a Samsung Electronics executive-turned-lawmaker who is head of the Semiconductor Industry Special Committee, that China and Korea should “exclude external interference” when it comes to cooperation in the semiconductor industry, the Chinese Embassy in Seoul said in a statement on its WeChat social media account. (https://finance.yahoo.com/news/tech-war-chinas-ambassador-meets-093000876.html) In the statement Xing Haiming said that bilateral cooperation with South Korea in various fields over the past 30 years had achieved fruitful results, bringing benefits to the people of both countries. The meeting has taken place as China ramps up its rhetoric against US efforts to establish the Chip 4 Alliance, a partnership seen by Beijing as a plot by Washington to exclude China from semiconductor value chains. The US has been ramping up trade sanctions against China in recent years, banning US firms from exporting advanced technology to the country on national security grounds. Beijing is growing increasingly concerned about losing critical materials and equipment supplies, especially in the semiconductor industry, an area where it wants to create greater self-sufficiency. South Korea is a crucial supplier of memory chips for China and both South Korean memory chip giants Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix operate fabs in China.

Newsline: Russia top diplomat reassures Egypt on grain deliveries

Russia’s top diplomat reassured Egyptian leaders Sunday that their orders for Russian grain would be met as he began a tour of African countries dependent on imports for their food supply. “We confirmed the commitment of Russian exporters of cereal products to meet their orders in full,” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a news conference after talks with Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry. “President Vladimir Putin stressed this during a recent telephone call with Egyptian President (Abdel Fattah) al-Sisi.” (https://news.yahoo.com/russia-fm-reassures-egypt-grain-141901077.html) Lavrov’s visit comes hot on the heels of a landmark deal Russia and Ukraine signed on Friday with the United Nations and Turkey aimed at relieving a global food crisis caused by blocked Black Sea grain deliveries.

Newsline: China turns to durian diplomacy to boost ties with Southeast Asia

It is probably the most controversial fruit in the world, and haters often complain that it smells just like rotten onion or stinky eggs. However, the durian, also known as the “king of fruit” to its fans, took centre stage in China’s latest charm offensive towards Southeast Asia as Beijing pledged to import more the fruit from its neighbours in an effort to cement its ties with the strategically important region amid its intensifying rivalry with the US. The fruit was given a special mention by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi during his recent visit to Kuala Lumpur. “This morning, we had a working lunch together and my dear friend served me the maoshanwang cake, which is so delicious and I am so impressed,” Wang told a reporter at a joint press conference alongside his Malaysian counterpart Saifuddin Abdullah, referring to a cake made with a popular type of Malaysian durian. Wang also said China was “ready to import more palm oil, tropical fruit and other agricultural products” from Malaysia. (https://finance.yahoo.com/news/china-turns-durian-diplomacy-boost-093000568.html) Later, in the southern Chinese city of Nanning, Wang was joined by Vietnam’s deputy prime minister Pham Binh Minh, where the two sides announced an agreement to allow Vietnam’s fresh durian to be exported to the Chinese market in the near future following nearly four years of negotiations.