The foreign ministry of China released a statement saying they were troubled by the recent phone conversation made between Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen and U.S. President-elect Donald Trump. Apparently, this phone call goes against diplomatic protocol between the United States and China which says that Taiwan is part of China and that any diplomatic relations with Taiwan should be handled through China instead. So, by Trump accepting the phone call from President Tsai, it could upset diplomatic relations considerably between China and the United States.
According to Trump, it was just a congratulatory phone call and didn’t mean anything more than that. This was supposedly the first time since 1979 that a U.S. president or president-elect had broken the diplomatic agreement by speaking with Taiwan’s president. Trump reportedly congratulated President Tsai on her election victory earlier in the year as well. There was also some discussion about the existing security, political, and economic ties that the United States has with Taiwan.
The big question is, did Trump realize there was this diplomatic protocol in place or was he just being his usual unpredictable self? Many political as well as financial experts say this phone call could hurt the relationship between the United States and China before Trump even takes office on January 20th, 2017. Is Trump going to try and shift the U.S. policy by changing this diplomatic agreement or is his team just lacking the knowledge in U.S. international affairs?
If Trump doesn’t say anything else to President Tsai, then perhaps Chinese officials will calm down a bit about the phone call. But if Trump has additional conversations with Tsai and purposes to open up additional trading ventures with them, it could destroy U.S. trade with China. This would have a much deeper impact on not only the American economy, but the global economy as well.