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China’s Xi Jinping warns country of tough times ahead

The head of China’s Communist Party, Chairman Xi Jinping, has warned the country that times will be increasingly difficult for China as the rogue state will have to look inward to negotiate the challenges, as it faces increasing isolation.

“In the coming period, we will face more and more headwinds in the external environment, and we must be prepared to deal with a series of new risks and challenges,” he said, according to comments released by state news agency Xinhua late Monday night.

He was addressing the country’s top-down economic policy-makers who are in charge of China’s so-called five-year-plan for economic growth.

To navigate the uncertainty, China, said Xi, will have to concentrate more on domestic demand and grow the economy internally as trade from other countries, including the U.S., falls off.

Xi, however, also called for more cooperation between countries, including, specifically, the United States.  

“We must actively cooperate with all countries, regions and enterprises who are willing to cooperate with us, including states, localities and enterprises in the United States,” he said.

The warning to top policymakers by the communist party strongman comes as Australia nixes a proposed buyout by China of an Australian dairy company.

“The proposed sale was canceled on Tuesday,” said CNN. “The Australian company, Lion Dairy, and its owner, Japanese beverage giant Kirin, both said in separate statements that approval from regulators was ‘unlikely to’ materialize.”

The Australian government had said the deal was not in the national interest, after initially okaying the deal.

Australia has been as vocal as the Trump administration has been about having a transparent investigation into the origins of the Wuhan virus, and China has reacted badly to the suggestions.

The Wall Street Journal, however, said today that the Chinese economy is recovering rapidly from the COVID-19 lockdown, but data from China is very difficult to parse.

Recent photos and videos from lockdowns in China’s Xinjiang province show residents under arrest, apartment doors sealed shut and gulag-like conditions, as COVID cases there spike.

“Another widely circulated video showed residents in Urumqi, a city of 3.5 million and the capital of Xinjiang, yelling from their homes in despair,” says the New York Times.

“Is this a prison or cage?” one user wrote on Weibo, a popular social media service. “Is this prevention or suppression?”

China has also had some of the worst floodings in 20 years, with mass culling of hogs and chickens because of the viruses. That may be why communists were anxious to restart trade talks with the administration this week.

China, which can’t feed its population under the conditions the country now faces, offers a massive agricultural export market for U.S. farmers. 

PHOTO: Andrea Verdelli/Getty Images

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