This hearing will examine the implications for the United States of a commercial, scientific, diplomatic, and military strategic competition with China. The hearing will begin with two individual panels comprising a strategic planning perspective on competition with China in space and a current Administration official’s assessment of the balance of power in space and China’s current space-based surveillance capabilities, respectively. The first full panel will examine China’s pursuit of global space leadership, focusing on China’s international space partnerships, its views on international law in space, and its exploration ambitions. The second panel will address the role of military-civil fusion in China’s space ambitions, including the role of military-civil fusion in context of China’s national space goals, U.S. competition with Chinese companies in the international satellite industry, and the adequacy of U.S. export controls. Finally, the third panel will examine China’s military space activities, focusing on its national military space goals and doctrine, its military space and counterspace capabilities, and the intersection of cyber and space in China’s strategy and operations.
China seeks to become an international leader in space, or what it terms a “space power in all respects.” In this role, Beijing aspires to lead international space-related innovation and exploration and establish an advanced system of infrastructure to serve its space sector. China has suffered some setbacks on projects crucial for the progression of program milestones, such as its heavy-lift launch vehicle program, and still lags behind the United States in its human spaceflight and space station program. Nevertheless, China’s space program is a source of national pride, and its consistent high level of political support and funding ensures progress toward establishing itself as a space power. In 2003, China joined the United States and Russia as a member of the exclusive group of countries to have conducted human spaceflight, and since then it has nearly completed a new, rival global navigation satellite system (GNSS)—set for completion in 2020—and demonstrated its willingness to undertake high-risk, high-reward missions, as reflected by its historic landing on the moon’s far side in 2019. China is likely to achieve future milestones in areas where it is lagging behind international standards on shorter timetables than when the United States accomplished similar missions.
This report examines China’s space goals and national space strategy; its progress toward those goals, including an examination of China’s progress in its advanced launch vehicle, long-term crewed space station, and lunar exploration programs; and the primary entities involved in setting and implementing its space policy. Finally, the report assesses the implications of China’s space program for the United States and its continued leadership in space.
Highlights of This Month’s Edition
• Bilateral trade: In January 2019, U.S. exports of goods to China fell 27.5 percent year-on-year to $7.1 billion—a record-setting decline; the monthly U.S. trade deficit in goods with China totaled $34.5 billion.
• Bilateral policy issues: On March 6, Huawei sued the U.S. government, alleging it had been unlawfully and incorrectly banned from U.S. government procurement.
• Policy trends in China’s economy: The Chinese government set an annual GDP growth target of between 6 and 6.5 percent in 2019 amid slowing global economic growth projections and ongoing trade tensions with the United States; China’s new Foreign Investment Law aims to address U.S. concerns about intellectual property theft and forced technology transfers; observers expressed concern the law will serve as window dressing and not result in meaningful change.
• In focus – China-EU relations: Intra-EU divisions on display amid President Xi’s trip to Europe; the European Commission labeled China a “systemic rival” and France tried to apply greater pressure on Chinese trade and technology policies, while Italy endorsed China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
This hearing will explore the China-Russia relationship and its implications for U.S. national security interests. The first panel will examine areas of strategic, military, and economic cooperation between China and Russia, and the second panel will assess the potential limits and barriers to cooperation in these areas. The third panel examines current and future China-Russia interaction in Central Asia, the Middle East, and the Arctic.
The U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission invites submission of proposals to design and develop the new www.uscc.gov website, from concept to completion. Electronic or hard-copy proposals must be submitted by 5:00PM (EST) on April 4, 2019.
Highlights of This Month’s Edition
• Bilateral trade: In 2018, the U.S. goods trade deficit with China grew 11.6 percent year-on-year to $419 billion due to a 7.4 percent drop in exports to China, while U.S. imports from China grew 6.7 percent to reach a record $539.5 billion.
• Bilateral policy issues: U.S.-China trade negotiations continue as the March 1 deadline for tariff increases is delayed until further notice; Huawei’s troubles compound as the U.S. Department of Justice charges the company with violating U.S.-Iran sanctions and stealing trade secrets; countries around the world weigh Huawei’s 5G participation, some push back on U.S. warning of security concerns.
• Policy trends in China’s economy: The long-awaited Greater Bay Area Plan, an ambitious blueprint to integrate nine cities in Guangdong Province with Hong Kong and Macau, sets the goal of rivalling Silicon Valley against high barriers to coordination.
• Sector focus – Digital Services: With over 800 million internet users, the Chinese digital services market is growing quickly, creating lucrative opportunities for digital services providers in industries such as cloud computing, digital content, and e-commerce. However, U.S. and other foreign digital services companies face significant regulatory obstacles and strong domestic competition.
The U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission was created by the United States Congress in October 2000 with the legislative mandate to monitor, investigate, and submit to Congress an annual report on the national security implications of the bilateral trade and economic relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, and to provide recommendations, where appropriate, to Congress for legislative and administrative action.