Taiwan has been governed independently of the Chinese Mainland since 1949. Despite this self-governing status, the CCP in Beijing views the island as an integral part of its territory and has vowed to eventually "unify" Taiwan with the mainland – with force, if necessary. (Related: Taiwan to buy 400 American anti-ship missiles as China continues to threaten the island nation.)
Tensions over the status of Taiwan have been growing in recent years, as the U.S. has positioned itself as the island nation's greatest ally and defender. Analysts are worried that the possibility of the U.S. being drawn into a hot war with China continues to increase as tensions remain heightened.
"China certainly doesn't seem like a friend – some say they're an enemy," commented Justin Barclay on his program on WOOD Radio. "So, why are we allowing them to put a plant in the middle of Michigan?"
The Michigan State Senate's Appropriations Committee approved a grant of $175 million in taxpayer-levied state funds for Gotion North America to build a factory in Green Charter Township, around 50 miles to the north of Big Rapids.
Gotion is, officially, a U.S. company based out of Silicon Valley. Its parent company is the Guoxuan High-tech Co., one of the largest lithium battery manufacturers in China. Guoxuan also has subsidiaries and research and development centers in Japan and all over Europe.
The Appropriations Committee voted 10 in favor and nine against to approve the transfer of state tax dollars for the building of Gotion's $2.4 billion electric vehicle battery parts manufacturing factory in Green Charter Township.
"Not only are we giving subsidies and allowing the Chinese to come in and buy land and build factories, we're pledging our national parks' land as collateral for our debt that we have to them," warned Barclay.
Residents and state Republicans alike have expressed their opposition to the plan, despite the claims of the company and Democrats that the large investment and the infusion of state funds will bring more than 2,350 jobs to Mecosta County.
"This is Gotion High-tech, a communist Chinese company wiggling their way into our country," said resident Ormand Hook. "[They're coming] into our country doing this. They don't follow our rules. They are America's enemy right now."
"It is bad enough that Gotion has deep ties to and is directly influenced by the Chinese Communist Party," said Republican State Sen. Lana Theis. "But that association only scratches the surface of the risks Gotion's battery plant will bring to our state."
She warned that even the smallest accident in that factory could cause "significant harm to water, land and air" and could take years and millions of taxpayer dollars to clean up. Local residents have even pointed out how dangerous it is for a company to be set up in an area that is primarily agricultural.
Gotion has denied that it works for the CCP. However, one clause in Gotion's corporate document states that the company "shall set up a party organization and carry out party activities in accordance with the constitution of the Communist Party of China … The company shall ensure necessary conditions for carrying out party activities."
Learn the latest news regarding China's actions at CommunistChina.news
Watch this episode of "West Michigan Live" with Justin Barclay on WOOD Radio as he discusses the brewing tensions between China and the U.S. over Taiwan, and what Michigan has to do with this geopolitical struggle.