Ethics

China Rewards Trump for Backing Down

SK Ashby
Written by SK Ashby

There's no way this is a coincidence.

China has just formally granted foreign trademarks to Trump that he's unsuccessfully sought to secure for over 10 years.

The registration became official on Feb. 14 and was published in a trademark registration announcement on the website of China's Trademark Office on Wednesday.

This may well be the first foreign trademark to be handed to Trump during his presidency, but is unlikely to be the last. In China alone he has 49 pending trademark applications and 77 marks already registered in his own name, most of which will come up for renewal during his term.

Just last week, Trump conveyed his support for "One China" policy that recognizes the nation of Taiwan as a part of China. This was a departure from his earlier rhetoric and even the rhetoric of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who shared hawkish remarks regarding China during his confirmation hearing. As you may recall, Tillerson even floated the idea of a naval blockade of China over disputed territory.

China has effectively rewarded Trump for his change in policy, to the extent that he ever had a policy. Trademarks in China are granted by the ruling communist party.

If Trump truly believes America is getting ripped off by China and that we must be respond by initiating a trade war, why would he still be seeking trademarks in China for his own business? The explanation that his children are running the business now won't cut it. Trump still owns it and his daughter Ivanka is present at many diplomatic meetings.