‘Shut down the world’: McCaul warns of global economic catastrophe if China invades Taiwan

TAIPEI, TAIWAN – A Chinese invasion of Taiwan could have catastrophic consequences for the global economy, including in the United States, warned the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Michael McCaul, Republican of Texas.

“What I think makes this island extremely important… is that 90% of advanced countries [semiconductor] manufacturing for the world is done right here. And if an invasion happens, I don’t see a scenario where it would survive,” McCaul told Fox News Digital in an interview at his Taipei hotel.

“Everyone who has phones, cars – we have advanced weapons systems – it’s all about semiconductors and this island, over time, because we’ve offshored [manufacturing]…we put ourselves in a very vulnerable position by doing this. And shutting down what’s happening here, semiconductors, would really shut down the world. »

The top Republican made the grim prediction after meeting with Taiwan’s president and foreign minister in the first U.S. delegation to sit down with the newly inaugurated officials.


House Speaker Michael McCaul spoke with Fox News Digital on the sidelines of his congressional delegation in Taipei, Taiwan. (Getty Images)

It also comes after China held some of its most aggressive military exercises off the coast of Taiwan, sending dozens of warships and aircraft into the island’s territory in retaliation for its new leader’s comments , President Lai Ching-te, expressing support for its independence from Beijing. Ruling Chinese Communist Party.

“These war games to intimidate and protest the Chinese elections are probably the most provocative I have ever seen in terms of the number of ships and planes,” McCaul said.

He stressed that a full-scale invasion by China could lead to an “electronic shutdown” and an economic spiral not seen since the COVID-19 pandemic sent global markets into a tailspin.

This includes the consequences for Americans in rural, urban and suburban areas, he suggested.

“From telephones to cars, to tractors, everything in your kitchen, all of our military defense,” he listed.

Semiconductors are an essential component of a litany of electronic devices, used in everything from healthcare to transportation, communications, military systems and everyday items like air conditioners, televisions and refrigerators.


Michael McCaul and Lai Ching-tse

Rep. Michael McCaul, left, is in Taiwan to meet with the island’s new leader, President Lai Ching-te. (House Foreign Affairs Committee)

“And again, the 90% number – really, it’s hard to understand. That’s why we want to bring more manufacturing back to the United States, but it’s going to take time, and I don’t know what the timeline is. .” [Chinese President Xi Jinping] is on,” McCaul said.

He referenced Xi’s past comments hinting at a potential invasion of Taiwan by 2027.

“If this happened, most likely, just because of the nature of the invasion, from the blockade to the cyberattack to a massive bombing exercise, I just don’t see how the invasion will survive where it is located,” McCaul said. “But even to maintain it, they’re going to have to rely on the United States for parts…And then what are we going to do? We don’t have the capacity right now.”

He then delivered a grim assessment: “I think right now we would probably lose” if China invaded Taiwan.

“It would make Iranian fire on Israel look like child’s play… This island does not have the capacity to defend itself right now,” McCaul said.

In addition to commemorating the inauguration of Taiwan’s new government, the U.S. group’s visit comes a month after Congress approved an $8 billion foreign aid package for the Indo-Pacific, including Taiwan, to help deter China.

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Taiwanese congressional delegation and foreign minister

The delegation also met with Taiwanese Foreign Minister Lin Chia-lung. (Elizabeth Elkind/Fox News Digital)

“They’re very happy, and we’re very happy to have completed our emergency supplement in time to give them the good news that we’re supporting them from a military equipment standpoint,” McCaul said. “I gave them updates on weapons and other things we are doing to help them, but they just wanted me to know that the threat was becoming very intense from President Xi.”


The Chinese government had specifically demanded that McCaul and other lawmakers, including Reps. Young Kim, R-Calif., Joe Wilson, R-S.C., Jimmy Panetta, D-Calif., Andy Barr, R-Ky., and Chrissy Houlahan, D-Pa., will not make the trip to Taiwan.

“We received a threatening statement telling me that I was violating the one-China policy and that there would be consequences for members, which has never gone that far,” McCaul said. “And now the threat to Taiwan is real for the island’s residents…and they fear they will be the next shoe to drop.”