National Security Strategy 1998

 

Arms control and non-proliferation issues were high on the agenda for 1998 summit, which expanded and strengthened the series of agreements that were reached at the 1997 summit. In Beijing, Presidents Clinton and Jiang announced that the United States and China will not target
their strategic nuclear weapons at each other. They confirmed their common goal to halt the spread of weapons of mass destruction. We welcomed China’s statement that it attaches importance to issues related to the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and missile nonproliferation and that it has begun to actively study joining the MTCR. Our two nations will continue consultations on MTCR issues in 1998. Both sides agreed to further strengthen controls on the export of dual-use chemicals and related production equipment and technology to assure they are not used for production of chemical weapons, and China announced that it has expanded the list of chemical precursors which it controls. The two Presidents issued a joint statement calling for strengthening of the Biological Weapons Convention and early conclusion of a protocol establishing a practical and effective compliance mechanism and improving transparency. They issued a joint statement affirming their commitment to ending the export and indiscriminate use of anti-personnel landmines and to accelerating global humanitarian demining. We also reached agreement with China on practices for end-use visits on U.S. high technology exports to China, which will establish a framework for such exports to China.
China is working with the United States on important regional security issues. In June 1998, China chaired a meeting of the permanent members of the UN Security Council to forge a common strategy for moving India and Pakistan away from a nuclear arms race. China condemned both countries for conducting nuclear tests and joined us in urging them to conduct no more tests, to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, to avoid deploying or testing missiles, and to work to resolve their differences through dialogue. At the 1998 summit, Presidents Clinton and Jiang issued a joint statement on their shared interest in a peaceful and stable South Asia and agreed to continue to coordinate their efforts to strengthen peace and stability in that region. On the Korean Peninsula, China has become a force for peace and stability, helping us to convince North Korea to freeze its dangerous nuclear program, playing a constructive role in the four-party peace talks.
The United States and China are working to strengthen cooperation in the field of law enforcement and mutual legal assistance, including efforts to combat international organized crime, narcotics trafficking, alien smuggling, illegal immigration, counterfeiting and money laundering. We have established a joint liaison group for law enforcement cooperation and assigned counternarcotics officers to each other’s embassies in 1998.
Our key security objectives for the future include:
• sustaining the strategic dialogue begun by the recent summits and other high-level exchanges;
• enhancing stability in the Taiwan Strait through peaceful approaches to cross-Strait issues and encouraging dialogue between Beijing and Taipei;
• strengthening China’s adherence to international nonproliferation norms, particularly in its export controls on ballistic missile and dual use technologies;
• achieving greater openness and transparency in China’s military;
• encouraging a constructive PRC role in international affairs through active cooperation in ARF, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC) and the Northeast Asia Security Dialogue; and
• improving law enforcement cooperation with PRC officials through increased liaison and training.
 
Southeast Asia
Our strategic interest in Southeast Asia centers on developing regional and bilateral security and economic relationships that assist in conflict prevention and resolution and expand U.S. participation in the region’s economies. U.S. security objectives in the region are to maintain our security alliances with Australia, Thailand and the Philippines, to sustain security access arrangements with Singapore and other ASEAN countries, and to encourage the emergence of a strong, cohesive ASEAN capable of enhancing regional stability and prosperity.
Our policy combines two approaches: First, maintaining our increasingly productive relationship with ASEAN—especially our security dialogue under the ARF. Second, pursuing bilateral initiatives with individual Southeast Asian nations to promote political stability, foster market-oriented economic reforms, and reduce or contain the effects of Asian organized crime, particularly the flow of heroin from Burma and other countries in the region.
 
Promoting Prosperity
A prosperous and open Asia Pacific is key to the economic health of the United States. On the eve of the recent financial problems in Asia, the 18 members of APEC contributed about one-half of total global gross domestic product and exports. Thirty percent of U.S. exports go to Asia, supporting millions of U.S. jobs, and we export more to Asia than Europe. In states like California, Oregon and Washington, exports to Asia account for more than half of each state’s total exports. U.S. direct investments in Asia represent about one-fifth of total U.S. direct foreign investment. Our economic objectives in East Asia include recovery from the recent financial crisis, continued progress within APEC toward liberalizing trade and investment, increased U.S. exports to Asian countries through market-opening measures and leveling the playing field for U.S. business, and WTO accession for China and Taiwan on satisfactory commercial terms. Opportunities for economic growth abound in Asia and underlie our strong commitment to multilateral economic cooperation, such as via the annual APEC leaders meetings.
Promoting sustainable development, protecting the environment and coping with the global problem of climate change are important for ensuring long-term prosperity in the Asia Pacific region. The Kyoto Agreement was a major step forward in controlling the greenhouse gases that are causing climate change, but its success depends on meaningful participation by key developing nations as well as the industrialized nations of the world. Rapid economic growth in China and India make their participation essential to the global effort to control greenhouse gases.
 
The Asian Financial Crisis
Over the last decade, the global economy has entered a new era—an era of interdependence and opportunity. Americans have benefited greatly from the worldwide increase of trade and capital flows. This development has contributed to steady GNP growth, improvements in standards of living, more high paying jobs (particularly in export-oriented industries), and low inflation.
The United States has enormously important economic and national security interests at stake in East Asia. Prolonged economic distress and financial instability will have an adverse effect on U.S. exports to the region, the competitiveness of American companies, and the well being of American workers. There also is a risk that if the current crisis is left unchecked its effects could spread beyond East Asia. Simply put, we cannot afford to stand back in hopes that the crisis will resolve itself. When we act to help resolve the Asian financial crisis, we act to protect the well-being of the American people.

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