The Policy Exchange think-tank hosted a debate on Tuesday evening, whereby Lord Hague said the West’s policy towards China is “incoherent and ineffective.”
Lord Hague said, “This crisis reinforces the case for two major pillars to be established for Western policy towards China.”
The first pillar arises as China will not to play by our rules, which means we cannot possibly be strategically dependent on China, especially on “technology.”
He said, “But the other important pillar arises from the fact that we can’t solve global problems without China.
“The Covid-19 crisis is an example of such a dramatic world crisis.
“So, we can’t be dependent on China, but we can’t be without a framework of cooperation with China.”
Lord Hague said that the US are currently pursuing a political policy solely based on “strategic independence,” whilst most European countries are focusing just on engagement.
“We can’t have supply chains that are dependent for ever on China, that is exemplified by this current crisis, and we have to have regard to future technology and resources.”
Lord Hague who is a former member of the National Security Council, said he saw little prospect of demands for an international inquiry into coronavirus outbreak which started in Wuhan, China.
He said, “Can any of us see China agreeing to and permitting an international investigation into what’s happened here?
“I think that’s very unlikely and there have been co-ordinated attempts by China, on social media, to spread ideas that it was somebody else’s fault, including the fault of the US.”
The former national security adviser to US President Donald Trump, has also spoken out against the West, and said it is time to “get some more backbone.”
He said it is “time for us to end our self-delusion on the Chinese Communist Party.”
Adding, “I think there is a broad recognition that the Chinese Communist Party is not going to change its behaviour and therefore we have to minimise our exposure, as Lord Hague said, our dependencies.”
Sir John Sawyer, the former MI6 chief has said that China “concealed” the truth from the West and are “evading blame” for the global coronavirus pandemic.
Sir John said that the World Health Organization (WHO) should also face “serious questions” as they failed to scrutinise China’s activities.