Win-Win with Chinese Characteristics
The new US administration seemed to score a big coup in Asia last week, when China blocked a fleet of North Korean cargo ships carrying coal to Chinese markets. On the surface, it seemed a perfect win-win for both Washington and Beijing.
It turned out, however, that the Chinese policy had already been in place since mid February – in response to UN pressure after the earlier round of Pyongyang missile tests. It’s still a powerful win-win deal, but now with Chinese characteristics: Beijing wins when they agree to the policy, and Beijing wins again when they implement.