Axios, an American news website founded by former Politico staffers, obtained a survey from a Chinese state supported think tank asking about the possibility of establishing a China-led world health organization to replace the World Health Organization (WHO).
Axios obtained a message from an employee of the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) Economics & Technology Research Institute (CNPC ETRI) to the Sino-Israel Global Network & Academic Leadership (SIGNAL), an Israeli nonprofit dedicated to strengthening Israeli-China ties.
The Chinese employee asked how SIGNAL would view a new health organization that China would lead. “According to our analysis, the situation of coronavirus around the world is urgent, therefore, we consider that perhaps the world needs a leadership country/organization coordinating all the countries affected in fighting against the coronavirus, just like the leadership role of the U.S. in W.H.O,” wrote the think tank employee.
Carice Witte, the founder and executive director of SIGNAL, told Axios the idea of a Beijing-led WHO alternative is “very interesting in the context of China’s aim to reshape global governance, including setting up parallel institutions.”
CNPC ETRI is a think tank affiliated with CNPC, a big state-owned enterprise. The president of CNPC ETRI reports to the Chinese leadership.
Axios pointed out that “Beijing is seeking to turn the coronavirus, initially a disaster for China’s public image, into an opportunity to advance its global leadership and bolster its soft power abroad.”
Radio Free Asia reported the comments of Zhang Lifan, a Chinese affairs commentator, who believed the think tank’s survey revealed what the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) leaders want to do. They are trying to portray a perpetrator as a world savior. “They link the (coronavirus) epidemic to the CCP’s previous global strategy ‘Community of Mankind’s Shared Future’ (人类命运共同体). They want to use this concept to kidnap the whole world; use the coronavirus to kidnap the world and then let China, as the originator of the coronavirus, kidnap (save) the world.”
Related postings on Chinascope:
- “World Leadership”: Commentary by Minister of Foreign Affairs
- Leadership: The Hype and Stop of the Book “The Great Power Fighting Epidemic”
1. Source: Axios, March 4, 2020
2. Excerpt in Chinese:
Source: Radio Free Asia, March 5, 2020