Chapter

Trading With the Enemy: The USA and the China Trade Embargo

Rosemary Foot

in The Practice of Power

Published in print April 1997 | ISBN: 9780198292920
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599286 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198292929.003.0003
 Trading With the Enemy: The USA and the China Trade Embargo

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This is the second of three chapters that analyse the connections between legitimacy and power, and seek to demonstrate the erosion of international and domestic support for America’s China policy. The topic addressed here is the changing status of American trade with China from the period before 1950 (when China had been a major post-war trading partner) until 1979. The first section of the chapter discusses the total trade embargo placed by the USA on trade with China in relation to the ‘China differential’ : the fact that international trade controls with China were harsher than those imposed on the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. The next section looks at the status of the American embargo in the period 1950–58 (the China differential was removed in 1957), and the following section at changing international and American policy on trade with China in the period 1958–1971, which culminated in Nixon’s decision in April 1971 to end the embargo on non-strategic sales to China. The last section of the chapter looks at trade patterns in the period 1972–79, which began with Nixon’s historic visit to China and the signing of the Shanghai Communiqu” in February 1972.

Keywords: American China policy; American trade embargo; China differential; China trade embargo; China; international trade controls; legitimacy; Nixon; power; trade controls; trade with China; United States

Chapter.  12213 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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