Nothing stays off the table forever.
Apple recently removed access to VPN services on its China App Store in compliance with government wishes. VPNs, or Virtual Private Networks, are the chief method for
Apple negotiates well in China — but is that enough?circumventing China’s “Great Firewall” and getting access to websites like Google, Facebook, and Twitter.
Apple has been one of the most successful brands in China, largely due to its adroit negotiating with PRC authorities. Market access, however, has come at a cost. Apple, like many other MNC brands in China, has consistently given ground on its core values – particularly in terms of privacy safeguards and data protection. Apple has routinely put its China user information under the control of Chinese government agencies and submitted to Chinese authorities, even as the company was mounting sophisticated legal challenges to government policies in the US and Europe.
We’ve seen this before. A new CEO with limited China experience introduces himself to the international business community with tough
talk and big promises about China and the rest of Asia. Then reality rears its ugly head.
The new US administration is doing what new US senior managers in China do best – sending conflicting messages, missing opportunities, and making sweeping pronouncements that are just about impossible to implement.
What can we expect moving forward?
Expect to watch the needle swing back and forth between Partner and Competitor pretty sharply for a while yet as the new trade bosses find their footing. Here are the potential flashpoints you should be watching.
- South China Seas
- US navy patrols,
- New island building / militarization
Yes, the Taiwan card has been played, but you can expect to see it massively overplayed at least once again in the near future. The present administration has probably forgotten the Taiwan call & tweet , and is hoping that the tough talk on North Korea will amount to little more than a photo-op. And that’s your problem(s).