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Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan is similar to ‘pouring salt within an open wound for China’, Stephen Roach says

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan ramps up U.S.-China tensions and risks pushing the countries further apart, in accordance with one economist.

On Wednesday, the very best U.S. lawmaker met Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen in an extremely controversial visit which has angered Beijing.

“We’re on a trajectory of escalating conflict which will surely make matters worse. It plays well to local politics in the usa and in Taiwan, nonetheless it will not play well to geostrategic forces which are pushing both of these nations apart,” Stephen Roach, a Yale University senior fellow and former Federal Reserve economist, told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Wednesday.

“The leadership in both U.S. and China to handle this conflict is compromised by this basically pouring salt within an open wound for China,” added Roach, who was simply also previously chairman of Morgan Stanley Asia.

A pro-Beijing protester stamps on a graphic depicting the united states House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at a protest beyond your US Consulate in Hong Kong on August 3, 2022 after Pelosi found its way to Taiwan late on August 2, 2022 within a tour of Asia which has inflamed tensions between your US and China.

Peter Parks | AFP | Getty Images

Roach said, however, that will not mean China ought to be “let off the hook”for a few of the concerns that Pelosi has raised.

“But to improve them in the context of a deteriorating relationship is requesting much more serious repercussions in a more difficult and intractable way to resolution. And we have been not on a way to resolution. This visit if anything, it pushes that time of returning together apart instead of bringing it closer together.”

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Pelosi may be the highest-ranking U.S. official to go to Taiwan in 25 years, drawing the ire of China which called the move a breach of the “one China” policy. Under that framework, the U.S. recognizes Beijing because the sole legal government of China, though Washington also maintains unofficial relations with Taiwan.

China on ‘defensive’

China had warned it could respond if Pelosi visited Taiwan, a self-ruled island that Beijing considers a runaway province.

At a Wednesday press conference after meeting Tsai, Pelosi said Taiwan was symbolic for democracy and was a contrast to the political system on mainland China and Hong Kong where in fact the “one country two systems” promise “didn’t happen.”

Pelosi got “plenty of bipartisan praise” when information on her trip became public, Doug Heye, a former communications director at the Republican National Committee, told CNBC’s “Capital Connection” on Wednesday.

Speaker of the U.S. House Of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), left, poses for photographs with Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen, right, at the president’s office on August 03, 2022 in Taipei, Taiwan.

Handout | Getty Images

“I actually am incredibly pleased with what Nancy Pelosi did with this trip. The simple move to make would’ve gone to fold and she sure didn’t take action,” he said, adding the home speaker is “in keeping with being who she is really.”

Still, Pelosi’s trip creates a fresh headache for the Biden administration, which includes tried to convince Beijing the visit says nothing about U.S. policy toward China or Taiwan.

Roach said the trip puts China on the defensive, pushing Beijing to show its resolve to pursue eventual reunification of Taiwan with the mainland.

“It is a setback compared to that objective in China,” he added.” I believe China can make some compensating adjustment to offset the setback. I don’t believe China can do anything rash. I don’t choose a overt military action, although … there exists a considerable exercise or power going on in the Taiwan Strait.”

Before Pelosi’s arrival in Taiwan, the Chinese military held live-fire exercises, deployed fighter jets to the Taiwan Strait and announced more military drills. Roach said while these maneuvers might not precipitate any other thing more immediate or serious, the chance of accidents must not be taken lightly.

China will not be ‘reckless’

Despite China’s saber rattling, Beijing won’t do anything “reckless,” said JaIan Chong, a co-employee professor of political science at theNational University of Singapore.

“I don’t believe that Beijing wants an emergency to spiral uncontrollable as well They would like to send a solid message, but I don’t believe they will wish to accomplish anything that’s particularly reckless,” he told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Wednesday.

“I believe it is critical to keep that at heart. Lots of this messaging intends to generate alarm, intends to generate fear also to claim that any effort to accomplish what China will not as with Taiwan brings substantial costs and substantial risks,” he added.

He underlined “coercion itself” includes enormous costs and risks to Beijing, adding it’s critical to balance that sort of “threatening behavior with considered of what Beijing actually wants and what Beijing’s in a position to carry off.”

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