Why the UK is sending a tough message on China

Why the UK is sending a tough message on China

One of the arguments made against leaving the EU was that Brexit Britain would have to subordinate everything in its foreign policy to economics and the need for trade deals. But the UK’s approach to China in recent months shows that this hasn’t turned out to be the case, as I say in the magazine this week.

On Tuesday, the government – in conjunction with Canada – announced measures to try and ensure that no products made using the forced labour of Uyghur Muslims end up in UK supply chains. Whitehall fully expects some kind of retaliatory response from China to this – just look at how Australia has been treated for saying there needs to be an independent inquiry into the origins of coronavirus – but went ahead anyway.