US-China technology war: discussion with David Zweig & William Nee & gene-edited babies
The United States is not only engaged in a trade war with the People’s Republic of China, the two nations are also vying for supremacy in technology and telecommunications. “Made in China 2025” is a state sponsored strategy to make the nation a major competitor in advanced manufacturing, a sector currently dominated by high-income, developed countries such as United States. The U.S. which currently tops the world in artificial intelligence, supercomputers, patent applications, aerospace and other technological innovations, sees this as a threat. One of the fallouts of this competition seems to be the recent arrest of a high ranking Chinese telecommunications executive in Canada at the request of the United States. With me are David Zweig, Director of the Centre on China’s Transnational Relations at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and William Nee, China researcher at Amnesty International
Last month, Chinese scientist He Jiankui announced the birth of the world’s first “designer babies”, Lulu and Nana. He had, he said, modified their genetic make-up before birth to reduce their chances of contracting HIV from their parents. Despite a global outcry, Dr He said, before disappearing from sight, that he is proud of his work. The technology he used is called Crispr, a genetic engineering technique that has raised fears, ethical issues and many unanswered questions.