CCP Calls for ‘Self-Reliance’ After Seeing Sanctioning and Isolation of Russia

By Winnie Han
Winnie Han
Winnie Han
Winnie Han reports on China news for The Epoch Times.
May 10, 2022 Updated: May 10, 2022

China has been emphasizing self-reliance since the U.S.-China trade war started, and the urgency of China’s desire for this appears to have grown stronger after witnessing Western countries imposing harsh sanctions on Russia for invading Ukraine on Feb. 24.

The next day, on Feb. 25, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) media People’s Daily published an editorial titled “Insist on Independence and Pioneering the Way Forward,” advocating independence and self-reliance to ensure that the party will always win.

On March 18, another CCP media Guangming Daily published a lengthy editorial on “adhering to independence and autonomy,” re-emphasizing the “necessity,” “importance,” and “urgency” of “adhering to independence and autonomy.”

On April 11, the website of the Communist Party’s magazine “Seeking Truth” ran an article titled “The Significance and Value of Adhering to Independence and Self-Reliance through the Perspective of the Grand View of History.” The article declared that “insisting on independence and self-reliance” was a profound reflection on the “severe setback” of the international communist movement, a feature of the Xi era, and called for “firmly taking your destiny in your own hands.”

Sanctions on Russia Make CCP Panic

“The way the United States has joined forces with its allies to deal with Russia is a bit like killing a chicken to warn a monkey,” Mike Sun, a North American investment consultant and China expert, told The Epoch Times. He said that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine incurs all-round sanctions from the United States and its allies, which makes the CCP panic.

Eswar Prasad, the former director of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) China Department and now a professor of trade policy at Cornell University, told the Wall Street Journal that The CCP sees very clearly that Western powers quickly acted against Russia and in a very cohesive manner.

According to the statistics of Castellum.AI, an international sanctions tracking platform, as of April 29, Russia has incurred 10,128 sanctions for its invasion of Ukraine, setting a record as the most severely sanctioned country. The most severe sanctions include the freezing of Russian dollar assets, the expulsion of some banks from the SWIFT system, and sanctions on Russian oligarchs and their families.

According to statistics from the Yale School of Management, as of May 5, nearly 1,000 companies around the world have announced they will withdraw or reduce their business in Russia. The industries involved energy, automotive, finance, aviation, mining, heavy industry, information technology, business consulting, accounting, logistics, entertainment, hospitality, retail, and other fields.

U.S.-China Decoupling Forces the CCP to Become Self-Reliant

Jida, an American current affairs commentator and China expert, told The Epoch Times, “Although the United States and its allies are fully supporting Ukraine against Russia, their ultimate goal is to weaken Russia’s power and concentrate its strength against the CCP.”

Michael Sun, Director of the Cultural Centre affiliated with the Overseas Community Affairs Council in Toronto, said, “In fact, the United States has already launched a plan to fully decouple from the CCP, including high-tech, finance, and exports. Of course, the CCP is also preparing for decoupling. Take grain as an example. The CCP has been hoarding grain, and Xi Jinping has repeatedly emphasized that the Chinese people’s rice bowl must be firmly held in their own hands, and it is necessary to ensure that the bowl is mainly filled with Chinese food.”

High tech is one of the CCP’s weakest areas, especially semiconductor technology. For national security reasons, the U.S. government has placed more than 1,000 Chinese-related entities on the sanctions list, including a large number of high-tech companies such as Huawei and ZTE, as well as many CCP central enterprises, in order to prevent the CCP from stealing key U.S. technologies.

Guo Nianshun, a lecturer at Capital University of Economics and Business and a Ph.D. from Peking University, wrote in an article in October last year that the interruption of U.S. technology supply has obviously caused damage to key Chinese companies and industries; Huawei and China’s high-tech were “strangled” by the United States, highlighting the urgency of China’s self-produced semiconductor industry to expand production capacity and high-end R&D.

Denis Simon, a professor of Chinese Business and Technology at the Fuqua School of Business, Duke University, wrote in an article titled “Embattled China seeks greater technological self-reliance” in June last year, that if imports are restricted, and there is a lack of domestic supply sources, Chinese enterprises may lose their advantages in the current international division of labor.

The CCP is Often Forced To Be Self-Reliant

The global Communist Party started with a group of rogue proletarians in the Paris Commune uprising in 1871, and the CCP, which stole politics in 1949, also started from “dire poverty and backwardness.” Lu Xiang, a scholar of the Chinese Communist Party and a researcher of the American Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, concluded in September 2018 that China’s economic development has gone through four stages.

The first stage was to learn from the former Soviet Union in an all-round way; the second stage, after the breakdown of Sino-Soviet relations, was to be forced into self-reliance; the third stage, after the “reform and opening up” in 1978, was the use of foreign capital to introduce and digest foreign advanced technology and equipment; the fourth stage, was the most difficult stage of independent innovation and industrial optimization and upgrading.

Lu said that the biggest obstacle to the rise of China is the United States, because the United States is the world’s most powerful country. He said this after the U.S.-China trade war launched by former U.S. President Trump to contain the CCP.

On March 22, 2018, Trump announced that he would impose tariffs on about $60 billion worth of Chinese imports to punish China for “theft of American intellectual property and trade secrets” and that the United States would restrict China’s access to American technology.

On July 13 of the same year, Xi Jinping, Chinese regime leader, admitted when attending a meeting of the Central Financial and Economic Committee of the CCP that the level of scientific and technological development in China, especially the innovation capability of key core technologies, was still far behind the international advanced level, and emphasized that there must be a “sense of urgency” and “sense of crisis.”

Self-Reliance Will Further Isolate the CCP

In May 2020, the CCP was forced to roll out a “dual circulation” strategy against the backdrop of the United States intensifying efforts to contain China’s technology industry. Xi said, the Chinese people need to spend more, and domestic manufacturers need to innovate more, to reduce reliance on a fickle foreign economy.

In March 2021, the CCP launched the “14th Five-Year Plan,” which includes increasing R&D investment by 7 percent each year over the next five years to achieve scientific and technological self-reliance.

The South China Morning Post reported on March 6 that self-reliance has been the top priority of the Chinese government this year, especially in the face of trade headwinds and geopolitical complexities in an international context that has put more emphasis on self-sufficiency among its economic priorities.

But Professor Simon warned that “The imperatives motivating Chinese leaders toward greater technological self-reliance have the potential to drive China further outside of the mainstream of the global economy.”

Epoch Times reporter Joyce Liang contributed to this report.

Winnie Han
Winnie Han reports on China news for The Epoch Times.