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Nancy Qian

The Best Way for China to Make Its Economy Sanctions-Proof

True self-sufficiency is impossible. Rather than putting up more walls, Beijing should be looking to integrate itself even more deeply into global supply chains. 

China depends on food imports. 

China depends on food imports. 

Photographer: STR/AFP/Getty Images

The devastating sanctions imposed on Russia by Europe and the United States have surely given leaders in Beijing pause. They were already taking steps to insulate the Chinese economy against similar punishment. Now they are likely to redouble efforts to make China more self-sufficient and thus, presumably, sanctions-proof.

In fact, they’d be wiser to do the opposite — to integrate more deeply with Western economies rather than detach from them.