U.S. Imposes Sanctions on 11 Chinese Companies Over Human Rights

The move, which affects suppliers to major international brands such as Apple, Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger, could force companies to sever some ties to China.

The New York Times
Date: July 20, 2020
By Ana Swanson


One of the companies sanctioned on Monday, Nanchang O-Film Tech, has said that it manufactured selfie cameras for some models of the iPhone.Credit…Ted Shaffrey/Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Monday barred 11 new Chinese companies from purchasing American technology and products without a special license, saying the firms were complicit in human rights violations in China’s campaign targeting Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region.

The list of sanctioned companies includes current and former suppliers to major international brands such as Apple, Ralph Lauren, Google, HP, Tommy Hilfiger, Hugo Boss and Muji, according to a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, a think tank established by the Australian government. The group cited the websites of the sanctioned Chinese companies, which mentioned their financial relationships with major American brands.

The administration’s announcement could precipitate more efforts by prominent clothing and technology brands to sever ties with opaque supply chains that touch on Xinjiang, a major source of cotton, textiles, petrochemicals and other goods that feed into Chinese factories.

Human rights groups and journalists have documented a campaign of mass detentions carried out by the Chinese government in Xinjiang, in which one million or more members of Muslim and other minority groups have been placed into large internment camps intended to increase their loyalty to the Communist Party. Some of these detainees are forced to work in factories in or near the camps, often processing Xinjiang’s abundant cotton crop into various textiles that may then be funneled into international supply chains.

A Times video investigation identified Chinese companies using a contentious labor program for Muslim Uighurs to satisfy demand for face masks and other personal protective equipment, some of which ended up in the United States and other countries.    [FULL  STORY]