The CIA announced on Thursday the formation of a new mission center tasked with addressing "the global challenge posed by the People’s Republic of China."
The announcement comes amid growing international cooperation between the world's preeminent super powers, and CIA Director William Burns said the new China Mission Center (CMC) will seek to unify the agency's operations "against this key rival."
“CMC will further strengthen our collective work on the most important geopolitical threat we face in the 21st century, an increasingly adversarial Chinese government,” Burns said in a statement.
The White House in March released a security assessment in which it said China "has rapidly become more assertive" around the globe, and is the sole US adversary who is "capable of combining its economic, diplomatic, military, and technological power to mount a sustained challenge to a stable and open international system."
The changes announced by Burns will also see the spy agency create a new Chief Technology Officer position, and form a Transnational and Technology Mission Center. That center will focus on what the CIA said are "global issues critical to US competitiveness—including new and emerging technologies, economic security, climate change, and global health."
There is some natural overlap between the China center and its newly-created technology-focused counterpart with Washington and Beijing consistently competing in the tech realm.
Addressing the CIA's workforce, Burns said the US is facing its "toughest geopolitical test in a new era of great power rivalry," vowing to ensure the agency would be "at the forefront of" the check China.
"There’s no doubt we have the talent for the job. And with the right approach, and the right structure in place, I know we’ll help ensure American leadership and American success on the global stage for decades to come," he said./agencies