Populism against Xinjiang products will backfire on Germany’s economy

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Illustration: Xia Qing/Global Times

The allegation of so-called “forced labor” in Xinjiang is a huge lie fabricated by anti-China forces in the United States and the West.

But unfortunately and to our surprise, some consumers in Germany have been duped by the making of these anti-China forces and tend to believe these lies. Rising populist sentiment is likely to further damage the German economy, pushing German businesses into a dilemma.

A Civey survey found that 71% of over 5,000 respondents in Germany said they tended to object to the import of products if there was suspicion that so-called “forced labour” was involved in the production process, Deutsche Welle reported on Tuesday.

The report says German consumers are increasingly aware of the need to ban products made under conditions that “violate human rights”.

As ordinary people in the West turn their eyes to Xinjiang, some Western media first fabricated outrageous lies about ‘forced labour’ in cotton-related industries in the northwest Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. of China, then took advantage of their power of speech to speak with a unanimous voice. voices to impact public opinion in the West, tricking people into believing their lies.

The Civey investigation proved that they succeeded in distorting the public understanding of Chinese Xinjiang. These outlets stoked public anger and resentment, then shrewdly manipulated populist sentiment to play the anti-China card.

Populist sentiment is unlikely to help Germans understand what exactly happened in Xinjiang, but it does have the potential to undermine German businesses and the country’s economy.

If German consumers keep in mind that Xinjiang cotton accounts for about 20% of the world’s cotton supply, they will understand how difficult it would be to ban products imported from Xinjiang.

Besides cotton, nearly 50% of the world’s polysilicon comes from Xinjiang. In addition, Xinjiang is an important production base for processed tomatoes in China. In recent years, more and more multinational enterprises in sectors ranging from textiles, food and manufacturing have come to Xinjiang due to the abundant natural resources and dynamic investment environment.

If German consumers want to ban products imported from Xinjiang, these multinational companies, including German ones, will be the first to suffer.

In this increasingly globalized era, the rise of populism is sure to shake up the global industrial chain. The victims will be many, including Germany’s own economy.

German inflation reached a new record of 7.9% in May, its highest level since the first oil shock in the winter of 1973/1974. Rising populism is expected to backfire on German businesses and its own economy, leading to worsening inflation.

Chinese manufacturers can enable global consumers to enjoy cost-effective products that have the same high quality as many Western luxury brands. It is unfortunate to see that some German consumers have been easily duped by baseless lies propagated by Western media.

The author is a journalist at the Global Times. [email protected]

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