President Trump and China

Now before anyone starts complaining, the letter grade in the title comes from the Council on Foreign Relations, truly one of the most august foreign relations think tanks in the world. Per Wikipedia:

The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), founded in 1921, is a United States nonprofit think tank specializing in U.S. foreign policy and international affairs. It is headquartered in New York City, with an additional office in Washington, D.C. Its membership, which numbers 4,900, has included senior politicians, more than a dozen secretaries of state, CIA directors, bankers, lawyers, professors, and senior media figures.

That’s right, the Council on Foreign Relations says President Trump is doing a really good job with China. Don’t believe me? Go here and download the pdf and read it for yourself. This is not a joke and in fact, I am firmly convinced most who deal with China would roughly agree with that assessment. Wait you say, this cannot be. President Trump doesn’t understand foreign policy and his spouting off on Twitter is anything but diplomatic.

Well guess what, it’s not as though the Council thinks President Trump is doing a good job with foreign policy overall, as indicated by an overall D+ grade, based on the specific breakdowns below:

The grades for President Trump’s foreign policies just past the halfway point in his term are: China (B+), North Korea (B), Syria (B+), Saudi Arabia (B+), Israel (B), Iran (C), Afghanistan (B+), India (B+), Venezuela (B+), and trade (C); against his grades for climate (F), European security (D), Russia (F), policy process (F), character (F), American values (F), U.S. alliances and deterrence (F), and policy implementation (D). This report, heavily influenced by the president’s realistic approaches to China and the greater Middle East, gives him an overall foreign policy grade of D+, a substantially higher mark for his foreign policies than found on the Sunday talk shows, in the editorial pages of the New York Times and Washington Post, or among many U.S. national security experts.

So all you China people out there, step back for just a minute and list out what President Trump has handled badly with China and what he has handled well. And then let us know whether you think he deserves a B+ grade and why you have the opinion that you do. I’ll go first and say that I think the grades above are for the most part pretty accurate and I especially agree with the China grade.

Dan Harris

I am a founder of Harris Bricken, an international law firm with lawyers in Los Angeles, Portland, San Francisco, Seattle, China and Spain.

I mostly represent companies doing business in emerging market countries. It has taken me many years to build my network and it takes constant communication and travel to maintain it. My work has been as varied as securing the release of two improperly held helicopters in Papua New Guinea, setting up a legal framework to move slag from Canada to Poland’s interior, overseeing hundreds of litigation and arbitration matters in Korea, helping someone avoid terrorism charges in Japan, and seizing fish product in China to collect on a debt.

I was named as one of only three Washington State Amazing Lawyers in International Law, I am AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory (its highest rating), I am rated 10.0 by (its highest rating), and I am a SuperLawyer.

I am a frequent writer and public speaker on doing business in Asia and I constantly travel between the United States and Asia. I most commonly speak on China law issues and I am the lead writer of the award winning China Law Blog ( Forbes Magazine, Fortune Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, Investors Business Daily, Business Week, The National Law Journal, The Washington Post, The ABA Journal, The Economist, Newsweek, NPR, The New York Times and Inside Counsel have all interviewed me regarding various aspects of my international law practice.

I am licensed in Washington, Illinois, and Alaska.

In tandem with the international law team at my firm, I focus on setting up/registering companies overseas (via WFOEs, Rep Offices or Joint Ventures), drafting international contracts (NDAs, OEM Agreements, licensing, distribution, etc.), protecting IP (trademarks, trade secrets, copyrights and patents), and overseeing M&A transactions.