Malus: Plenković bought some time
Author: CSEBA / Slobodna Dalmacija
2nd October 2020
ZAGREB - Pompeo's messages are expected, I thought that his performance would be even sharper, considering that we could hear from unofficial diplomatic sources these days that the pressure from the USA is strong. However, apparently the Government has found a way not to succumb to them. After all, what Pompeo said in Dubrovnik, he said at many other European addresses and is not a surprise - says Siniša Malus, CSEBA's communication manager.

Malus commented on Pompeo's criticism of the Chinese telecommunications company Huawei, which is involved in building the world's 5G network, and which the Americans claim will hand over the data to Beijing and use it for espionage.

- Regarding the 5G network, it is specific to us that we have not gone very far in this regard, so Huawei has not yet come to the position of doing something here. As far as that company is concerned, the Germans have the most balanced approach, which Huawei did not want to reject in advance because their technique is the best. When already lobbying against Huawei, let Pompeo offer another solution. But the alternative is nothing - comments Malus for Slobodna Dalmacija.

Asked whether projects that Croatia and China are negotiating or intending to contract could be called into question in such an atmosphere, Malus said:

- It's such a time that everything can come into question. However, there are projects that the Chinese have already entered and there should be no problems from that side - he points out.

In the time ahead, I believe that the pressure from the United States will continue, he adds, it will seek a clearer commitment between them and the Chinese, and it will be difficult to avoid a decision in the wake of Euro-Atlantic integration.

- However, the upcoming US elections and their outcome could play an important role. If there is a change, no matter how stable American foreign policy is, the U.S. attitude toward the world will be different. I think that Plenković bought a little time there - Malus points out.

When asked whether Croatia should strictly choose between these two great powers, he answers:

- No. We do not live in a time of Cold War and global conflict in which China is the enemy of the Western world. On the contrary, models of cooperation with them are being developed by Italy, Hungary, Greece and Germany. Now a little less, partly because of the COVID-19 crisis - says Siniša Malus.

This is exactly the terrain that could slow down Chinese investments.

- The fact is that precisely because of the spread of coronavirus around the world, China will find it harder to do business within the European Union. Participation in tenders will be much more complex than before.

- Some tenders, such as the Peljesac Bridge, would be much harder for the Chinese to win today, among other things due to great pressure from companies from the west, said Sinisa Malus.

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