China debates cutting US access to drugs as hostilities spike | South China Morning Post

In recent weeks, as the United States has ramped up its

attacks on Chinese tech firms

and the threat of

financial decoupling

has grown, government advisers in Beijing have begun debating a so-called nuclear option: cutting US access to medicines.

From pills for pain relief to HIV medications, the US is heavily

reliant on imported medicines

from China thanks to large-scale offshoring in the 1990s.

While weaponising drug exports and precursors does not have official backing, its discussion has provoked concern in both Washington and Beijing.

The idea has been recently floated by the likes of

Li Daokui

, a prominent Chinese academic and government adviser, who told local media that limiting access to medicines could be legitimate retaliation for US export controls on American technology and software.

Source: China debates cutting US access to drugs as hostilities spike | South China Morning Post