In this episode of the Asia Chessboard, hosts USSC CEO Mike Green and Freeman Chair in China Studies at CSIS Jude Blanchette are joined by Paul Haenle, Maurice R. Greenberg Director’s Chair of Carnegie China and former China director for the National Security Council staffs of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and Faryar Shirzad, who served in the Bush administration with Paul as deputy national security advisor for International Economic affairs and is now Chief Policy Officer at Coinbase.

They begin by recapping economic and security ties between the United States and China at the outset of the Bush administration in 2001, discussing the administration’s China policy and the legacy of its approach to Asia more broadly. The conversation turns to the broader implications of trends in US-China economic relations, which are increasingly characterised by heightened government controls and expectations of national loyalty among multinational firms. Next, they emphasize the importance of placing the US-China relationship on better footing and improving communication. They observe how the Bush administration’s efforts to shape the geopolitical environment around China have borne out today and conclude with a call for renewed US pursuit of economic diplomacy. Throughout the conversation, they discuss Hand-Off, a collection of once-classified memos that the Bush administration passed to the incoming Obama administration to support a smooth transition for US foreign policy.

The Asia Chessboard is co-produced by the United States Studies Centre and Center for Strategic and International Studies and features in-depth conversations with the most prominent strategic thinkers on Asia. Co-hosts Dr Michael Green (CEO of the United States Studies Centre) and Jude Blanchette (Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies) take the debate beyond the headlines of the day to explore the historical context and inside decision-making process on major geopolitical developments from the Himalayas to the South China Sea.