The 2023 Shangri-La Dialogue begins in Singapore today. Military personnel and defense ministers from across the Indo-Pacific will gather to
The 2023 Shangri-La Dialogue begins in Singapore today.
Military personnel and defense ministers from across the Indo-Pacific will gather to discuss ongoing security concerns in the region, including cyber-security and nuclear proliferation. While defense ministers Lloyd Austin from the U.S. and Li Shangfu from China will be present at the conference, Beijing declined Washington’s invitation for a meeting between their defense chiefs.
U.S.-China relations have steadily deteriorated since the US shot down a Chinese spy balloon over the continental U.S. last February. In March, the U.S. imposed restrictions on investment into China, specifically on dual-use technologies such as microchips. This was followed by an agreement between the U.S. and Taiwan in May to implement the first stage of a new bilateral trade initiative. In response, China announced its restrictions on U.S. chipmaker Micron due to national security concerns.
China declining the meeting will likely lead to further speculation about the intensifying rivalry and increases the likelihood for misunderstanding and miscalculation should a regional crisis flare up. Tensions between the two countries will likely continue to worsen in the coming months as more tit-for-tat economic measures are proposed and enforced. If the economic conflict continues to worsen in the coming years, the U.S. and Chinese technology sectors will likely decouple, potentially forcing non-aligned countries to choose between the two for sourcing their dual-use technologies.