A comprehensive analysis by business media has found that the US is trying to kick China out of the world undersea internet cable infrastructure by limiting Chinese companies’ involvement.
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The campaign comes amid a spiraling technology-related trade war between the People’s Republic on one side and the US and its allies on the other, with both sides making references to national security, and Washington claiming ad nauseam that Beijing uses Chinese tech companies’ products to spy on Americans. China has denied such allegations.
Successive US governments have been actively working to limit Chinese companies’ involvement in the laying of underwater fiber optic cables connecting the world to the internet, a comprehensive analysis by business media has found.
The US strategy, which includes (but is not limited to) freezing Chinese companies out of undersea internet cable projects where US investment is involved, is reportedly being justified on the basis of claims about China’s potential use of the cables for espionage, as well as concerns about what might happen to Chinese-operated cables if the US and China found themselves at war.
China has responded to US obstruction by forging links in places where the US and its French and Japanese allies haven’t reached, such as remote southern Chile, the Russian Far East, Southeast Asia and a major connection between South America and Africa via cables running from Brazil to Cameroon. According to industry sources, Beijing has also worked to grow its fleet of Chinese-made cable layers and maintenance vessels, and pushed companies whose cables run through Chinese waters, including in the South China Sea, to use cable made by HMN Tech –China’s largest fiber optic cable supplier.
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Washington has taken its ‘no China’ strategy to great lengths, reportedly rendering infrastructure worth “hundreds of millions of dollars” unused at the bottom of the sea after forcing Amazon and Meta to drop a major cable deal with China Mobile which would have linked the state of California up to Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong, refusing to sign off on the nearly completed project even after China Mobile pulled out.
The US attempts a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy against BRICS by undermining the BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) from the inside.