The coronavirus pandemic may have shed light on China’s influence in America over the supply chain, including life-saving medicines, technology and equipment.
But some analysts believe the ongoing crisis lays bare the inroads China has made on U.S. soil.
The American Security Institute recently released a report and launched a campaign, featuring a billboard in Times Square, to draw further attention to the extensive array of sectors the Chinese government and its partners have invested into. But, exactly how much does the nation own?
China produces 97 percent of U.S. antibiotics and about 80 percent of active pharmaceutical ingredients used in American drugs, giving the Chinese Communist Party absolute control of potentially life-saving medicine. For example, Chinese pharmaceutical companies supply 70 percent of the world’s acetaminophen, commonly used in Tylenol.
In 2017, the United States imported $4.6 billion in agricultural goods from China, which is also responsible for much of the global supply of soy and pea proteins that are found in nutritional supplements and synthetic meats. A Chinese firm has also purchased Smithfield, the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer.
(Smithfield said in a later statement pertaining to their ownership structure that they are “a U.S. company that provides more than 40,000 American jobs and partners with thousands of American farmers. The company was founded in Smithfield, Virginia, in 1936 and was acquired by Hong Kong-based WH Group in 2013. WH Group is a publicly-traded company with shareholders around the world. Anyone anywhere can purchase shares of WH Group on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. WH Group’s shareholders include many large U.S.-based financial institutions.”
The Chinese government’s theft of intellectual property has been an open secret for decades. More recently, U.S. authorities have discovered China is funding American university researchers, who don’t always disclose those contributions.