Congress Deals Major Blow To China

Photo by Nuno Alberto on Unsplash

On Monday, the House passed a bill that would revoke the People’s Republic of China’s “developing country” status in international organizations which had previously allowed the country access to economic benefits and loans.

The bill was introduced by Reps. Young Kim (R-Calif.) and Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), and it is dubbed the PRC Is Not a Developing Country Act. With the passing of this bill U.S. government policy would no longer support China being considered, labeled, or treated as a developing country under any international treaty or agreement in which the U.S. is also a member, this would include the World Trade Organization.

The bill was advanced through the House in a unanimous vote of 415-0 and it is now considered to be moving through the fast-track “suspension of the rules” process, which would expedite the debate as more than a two-thirds majority passed the bill.

Kim said on the House floor that PRC had been taking advantage of “their developing country status by applying for development assistance and loans from international organizations” while at the same time spending trillions on infrastructure projects in other developing countries under their Belt and Road Initiative.

Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.) also stated that the support for the bipartisan bill “deepens both U.S. engagement in international treaties and organizations while trying to effectively counter the PRC’s own self-interested actions in these forums.”

As part of the bill, the State Department is now going to be advocating for the removal of PRC’s developing country status.