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The Chinese government tried to get workers at the Federal Reserve, the US central bank, to act as spies and share sensitive information about the state of the US economy, according to a report published on Tuesday.
The report, prepared by Senate employees on behalf of the Republican Party, found that China offered contracts and cash payments to Federal Reserve (Fed) workers in exchange for providing confidential information about the agency’s studies or future interest rate decisions.
On one occasion, a Fed economist traveling in Shanghai in 2019 was threatened with imprisonment if he did not disclose U.S. economic data not available to the public to the authorities of that country.
President Joe Biden is scheduled to hold a phone call “very soon” with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, to address the situation in Taiwan and the war in Ukraine, the White House announced Tuesday.
There is no date yet for the expected telephone exchange between the two leaders, which will be the fifth since Biden arrived at the White House in January 2021.
Apart from Taiwan, the two leaders will also talk about the South China Sea, a region in which there is an estimated 11 billion barrels of oil and which the Asian giant disputes with Taiwan, Brunei, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam.
The Biden administration has said it is considering ending tariffs on Chinese goods imposed by former President Donald Trump (2017-2021).