Britain will offer to work with it close allies, namely the European Union, Japan, and the US, to crack down on what it dubs "unfair behaviour" by Chinese state-owned firms, the country’s trade minister, Liz Truss, is expected to tell the World Economic Forum on Friday, media reported citing extracts from the top official's upcoming speech.
"We want action on subsidies and state-owned enterprises, which can undermine genuine free trade and have to stop being used unfairly - that means being more consistent in enforcing our current system, and bringing in new rules", Truss will reportedly note.
More specifically, she is expected to call on British partners to take “decisive action on cheats and bad actors in global trade".
Politico reported earlier this month that the UK is seeking common ground that might guarantee good ties with Washington over the next four years, so that they arrive at an effective joint front against those Chinese policies deemed malign by some western nations. Members of the new Biden administration have already notably warned that some aspects of its policy towards China will not be in any way different from that of President Trump: Washington is understood to still cherish plans to confront Beijing on a number of trade issues.
As a prominent example in this regard, the United Kingdom has already moved to prohibit telecom firms in the country from installing equipment by the Chinese tech giant Huawei in 5G networks, with the measure due to be effective from September 2021. The decision came after London had a change of heart on the matter following pressure from the Trump administration.
This Year's Davos
The global economic rebound after the end of the pandemic is the key burning issue being discussed at the World Economic Forum this week.
The online gathering is formally titled "Crucial Year to Rebuild Trust" and focuses among other pressing issues on COVID-19 vaccination programmes, climate change, and post-COVID employment.
The forum kicked off on 25 January and Friday, 29 January, is its closing day.