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The US Unanticipated Costs of Decoupling from China


  • Jun Zhang
  • Shuo Shi


The decoupling policies enforced by the Trump Administration aim to break the US economic relationship with China. Those policies, however, are escalating strategic costs for the US in at least three unanticipated ways: the decoupling policies are losing the endorsement of US multinational corporations, undermining the solidarity of the US and its allies, and making supply chains more likely to disengage from the US than to disengage from China. We argue that the ongoing decoupling policies are costing more than the US can bear and will end in vain. If the Trump Administration enforces further decoupling policies without considering those implicit costs, it will only set the US up for a more expensive failure.

Suggested Citation

  • Jun Zhang & Shuo Shi, 2020. "The US Unanticipated Costs of Decoupling from China," China & World Economy, Institute of World Economics and Politics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, vol. 28(6), pages 1-27, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:chinae:v:28:y:2020:i:6:p:1-27
    DOI: 10.1111/cwe.12359

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2020. "Scarring Body and Mind: The Long-Term Belief-Scarring Effects of COVID-19," NBER Working Papers 27439, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    1. China's Hedge Against Geopolitical Shock
      by Zhang Jun in Project Syndicate on 2022-03-14 15:35:55


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    1. Emily Blanchard & Amelia U. Santos-Paulino & Claudia Trentini & Emanuel Milet, . "Implications of rising trade tensions for FDI projects," UNCTAD Transnational Corporations Journal, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

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