The massive criticism from the FDP and Greens and the opposition to the federal cabinet decision on the minority stake of the Chinese state-owned company Cosco in a terminal in the port of Hamburg does not stop.
The foreign policy spokesman for the FPD parliamentary group, Ulrich Lechte, calls on Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) to adopt a more China-critical attitude during his inaugural visit to Beijing next week. There he would have to take a “much tougher stance towards China”, Lechte told the editorial network Germany (RND). It is incomprehensible that Scholz agreed to the sale despite warnings. “I find it negligent and short-sighted to make oneself dependent on an authoritarian system without necessity.”
The Green European politician Reinhard Bütikofer told the RND that Scholz might get a few points in Beijing that he had given in to an “open Chinese attempt at blackmail in the matter of Cosco”. But it is a shame for Germany’s reputation with other allies. Bütikofer was convinced: “Sooner or later German going it alone led to a weakening of their own position, including that towards China.” Cosco will hardly get out of the deal. “You’re getting your foot in the door, why would you give that up?”
The CDU foreign politician Norbert Röttgen told the RND that Scholz was sending the wrong signal with his trip to China: “The Chancellor is acting as if nothing has changed in China under Xi Jinping and is traveling to China as ever with a huge business delegation. That is the wrong signal internally and externally.” The message to German companies is that they should continue as before instead of systematically reducing dependencies, said Röttgen, who sits on the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Bundestag. The current German China policy does not take into account Beijing’s recent change from an authoritarian system to a dictatorship.