It is official. Liz Truss has been elected prime minister of Great Britain. Few people were surprised when Liz Truss was announced as the new prime minister of the United Kingdom on Sept. 5. Her preference was to succeed the often-maligned and rarely-boring Boris Johnson. Like her predecessor, Truss, 47, is no stranger to criticism. She has made repeated promises to tough China, unlike her predecessor.
Whether Truss or her team can defeat the Chinese threat to the UK, which is one of its largest trade partners , still remains to be determined.
Truss’ efforts to combat the Chinese threat will be impeded by a large obstacle. British scientists are very friendly with China, and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in general. China and the UK have many things in common.
With a budget of EUR95.5 billion, Horizon Europe is the European Union’s No. Horizon Europe is the No. 1 European Union funding program for innovation and research. You will recall that the UK left the EU over two years ago. There is now a good chance the UK will opt out of Horizon Europe. Should the UK decide to end the Horizon Europe program, funding for British scientists from Brussels will cease. These scientists will not survive. How will they get the money?
Enter China. This country is eager to invest in the UK.
Let’s begin with the Newton Fund or as it is known in China, UK-China Research and Innovation Partnership Fund. According to the British Council’s website, this PS200 million fund between London and Beijing covers a couple of very specific activities:
- People: promoting student and researcher fellowships, as well as mobility schemes.
- Programs: Collaborations between researchers in the UK and China.
Priority research areas include energy, food, water, security, and environmental technology. The British Council of China implements a number of these programs.
Then, there’s UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), which, we’re told, “convenes, catalyses and invests in close collaboration with others to build a thriving, inclusive research and innovation system.” This includes convening and collaborating with China. According to its site, UKRI China was established to develop close relationships with China’s “national and regional research and innovation funding agencies.” This includes the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Ministry of Science and Technology, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. With an office in Beijing, UKRI China has received a total combined investment of a cool PS360 million. Furthermore, the initiative has brought together “more than 350 partner research organisations and businesses in the UK and China.”
Before I’m accused of being an xenophobic fearmonger it is well-known that China, or more precisely, the CCP, cannot be trusted. Beijing must give permission to any Chinese researcher or student who travels abroad. Some of those that travel abroad are sent to spy on important individuals and/or prestigious organizations. CCP-backed agencies are like making a deal of sham with the devil. It is an epic Faustian bargain. A country gives Beijing the keys to its house in exchange for large investments. It is impossible to believe otherwise.
Rather comically, via the China Fund Prosperity Programme, the UK is currently working with China to address major global challenges. However, British politicians ignore the threats and challenges in their backyard, either conscious or not. As I write this, a British company named Grainger and Worrall is manufacturing weapons for the Chinese military.
The influence China has over the UK can’t be understated. There are currently 30 Confucius Institutes operating in the UK. As I have discussed before, these organizations are nothing less than extended arms of the CCP. Ostensibly, these institutes were established to promote Chinese culture; in reality, they were established to limit free speech and spy on unsuspecting university students. These institutes are Trojan horses that harm and not assist countries. This is the very reason why Sweden decided to ban Confucius Institutes back in 2020.
If this isn’t bad enough, China now owns $143 billion in UK assets, including nuclear power plants, bars, and schools. China has also a significant stake in the UK’s electricity grid. In fact, if push came to shove, China could plunge England, Wales, and Scotland into complete darkness. This should not be thought of as a representation of the UK’s complete blindness and inability to deal with the Chinese elephant.
This brings us to Ms. Truss. Is she able to fend off the CCP threat? You can call me pessimist but I seriously doubt it.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
John Mac Ghlionn, a researcher and essayist. His writings have been published in the New York Post and The Sydney Morning Herald as well as National Review, Newsweek, National Review and The Spectator US. His work covers psychology, social relations and media manipulation.