Sunday, August 7, 2022

US targets 5 Chinese companies over alleged forced labor in Xinjiang

The Biden administration imposed trade sanctions on five Chinese companies in Xinjiang over allegations of forced labor, the White House said on June 24, citing the G7’s pledge to clean up the global supply chain.

It ordered a ban on US imports of a key solar panel material from Chinese-based Hoshine Silicon Industry Co and separately restricted exports to Hoshine, three other Chinese firms, and the paramilitary Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC), it said. Saying that they were involved in it. Forced labor of Uighurs and other Muslim minority groups in the Chinese province.

The US Department of Labor also added polysilicon produced by forced labor in China to its “list of goods produced by child labor or forced labor.”

“These actions demonstrate our commitment to impose additional costs on the People’s Republic of China (PRC) for engaging in cruel and inhumane forced labor practices and ensure that Beijing is fair as part of a rules-based international order.” plays by the rules of business,” the White House said.

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Beijing has denied allegations of genocide and forced labor in Xinjiang.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian, reacting to earlier reports of US action, said on Thursday that China would take “all necessary measures” to protect the rights and interests of its companies.

The three other companies added to the US economic blacklist were Xinjiang Dakou New Energy Co., a unit of Dakou New Energy Corp.; Xinjiang East Hope Nonferrous Metals Company, a subsidiary of Shanghai-based manufacturing giant East Hope Group; and Xinjiang GCL New Energy Material Co., is part of GCL New Energy Holdings Limited.

At least a few companies are major manufacturers of monocrystalline silicon and polysilicon used in solar panel production.

The White House said in its statement that the companies’ practices are not only contrary to American values, but have also broken the scales against American workers by “exploiting workers and artificially suppressing wages”. It noted the Biden administration’s emphasis on boosting the US solar industry.

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It added that US Customs and Border Patrol had confiscated imports from Hoshine, “based on information reasonably indicating that Hoshine used forced labor to manufacture silica-based products.”

Hoshine Silicon Industry previously stated in an interactive investor forum that it does not export industrial silicon directly to the United States, which would limit the impact of the ban.

Xinjiang Dakou New Energy Co. said in an email to Reuters that it has “zero tolerance” to forced labor, and does not sell or buy directly from the United States, so will not have a “significant impact” on its business.

The other companies or their parent firms, including XPCC, did not request comment, or could not be contacted.

By Karen Freefeld, David Shepardson, Michael Martina and David Brunstrom

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Nation World News Desk
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