Qantas pressured to adopt one-China policy over Taiwan

"Regardless of what the United States will say or do, it will not change the fact that there is only one China in the world", spokesman Geng Shuang told a regular briefing, reiterating a statement Sunday.

The Trump administration made the comment in a bluntly-worded statement responding to letters sent to more than 30 foreign airlines by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

Taiwan's independence-leaning president, Tsai Ing-wen, weighed in with a tweet, saying, "We call on all businesses to resist #China's efforts to mischaracterize #Taiwan".

The attack mainly refers to a letter written by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), which demands that 36 foreign carriers, including American airlines, list the worldwide status of Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan as "region" instead of "country".

"This is Orwellian nonsense and part of a growing trend by the Chinese Communist party to impose its political views on American citizens and private companies", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said. Further, President Trump "will stand up for Americans resisting efforts by the Chinese Communist Party to impose Chinese political correctness on American companies and citizens".

China is threatening foreign airlines with a version of the social credit system that is being implemented domestically, where more than seven million Chinese citizens have been deemed "untrustworthy".

According to a Chinese foreign ministry statement late on Saturday, Mr Yang told Mr Pompeo that the two countries should strengthen exchanges, maintain close communication over economic and trade issues and respect each other's "core interests and major concerns".

In their telephone conversation on Saturday, Pompeo and Politburo member Yang Jiechi "affirmed the importance of a constructive, results-oriented bilateral relationship", State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.

Australian carrier Qantas, which also received the letters, had been referring to Taipei as part of Taiwan and was still doing so Monday in the drop-down menu in its booking engine.

"As to this matter, we have deferred it to the US Government since this is a diplomatic issue to be resolved among governments", he said in an email. "There should be no pressure from governments, whether ours or others, that threatens the ordinary operations of business".

"China's internal internet repression is world-famous, " she added.

The Taiwanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs had previously slammed China for its "overbearing use of political power".

In the PATA directory blurb it describes the member from Taiwan as: "The Taiwan Visitors Association, a non-profit organisation, promoting tourism for the Republic of China through both domestic and worldwide activities".

  • Rogelio Becker