If you want to understand why the USA is terrified of China, trying to slow it down with a trade war and banning it’s social media apps, it has less to do with “national security” and mostly to do with R&D expenditure. Have a look at the way China’s R&D has grown in the last 20 years. In 2000, their R&D was about 1/10 of the USA’s. Today, they have nearly caught up (although private R&D in the US continues to keep them ahead). And there are no signs of China slowing down, either, with a goal of a 10% YoY increase declared at the latest “Two Sessions“.

The US National Science Board recently warned that “China has now surpassed us in STEM talent production, research publications, patents, and knowledge-and technology-intensive manufacturing… China has set the goal of being the world’s leading S&E (Science & Engineering) nation and these NSB reports demonstrate that the United States is on the verge of allowing them to realize that objective. We already see this in artificial intelligence, where China out publishes us, has more patents, and produces more students than the United States.”

What happens when most of the latest technological innovation is coming out of “Communist” China?