New Delhi: As many as 28 firms from China and four from Pakistan are among the 37 companies from six countries have been put on a US trade blacklist for a range of reasons including contributing to ballistic missile programmes of concern, including Pakistan’s.
“Fourteen entities based in China and Pakistan are being added to the Entity List for contributing to ballistic missile programs of concern, including Pakistan’s missile program, and for involvement in unsafeguarded nuclear activities,” The US Department of Commerce, which overseas export controls, said in a statement.
The list, which did not mention the number of Pakistani firms being blacklisted, includes a separate category titled: “Ballistic Missile and Unsafeguarded Nuclear Activities.”
The department added 37 entities to its Entity List for allegedly contributing to Russia’s military and/or defence industrial base, supporting China’s military modernization and facilitating or engaging in human rights abuses in Myanmar and China.
Chinese companies figured prominently on the latest addition announced yesterday are genetics company BGI and cloud computing firm Inspur, a move that could further ratchet tension between the US and China.
The Department added BGI Research and BGI Tech Solutions (Hong Kong) to the list over allegations the units pose a “significant risk” of contributing to the Chinese government surveillance.
“The action of these entities is based upon information that indicates their collection and analysis of genetic data poses a significant risk of diversion of China’s military programs “ as also contribute monitoring surveillance by the government, which has been utilized in the “repression of ethnic minorities in China, the department said.
Also listed was BGI’s forensics subsidiary, Forensics Genomics International.
It was earlier reported that BGI was collecting genetic data from millions of women for sweeping research on the traits of populations, and collaborates with China’s military.
In 2020, the department had added two units of BGI group, the world’s largest genomics company to its economic blacklist over allegations they conducted genetic analyses used for further the repression of China’s Uyghurs minority.
Beijing had denied wrongdoing, saying it does not engage in unethical practices and does not provide gene technology for the surveillance of Uyghurs.
The department accused the cloud computing firm Inspur of acquiring and attempting to acquire US goods to support China’s military modernization efforts.
The list also included several entities allegedly supplying or attempting to supply a sanctioned entity in Iran, three firms in Russia besides others in Belarus and Taiwan alleged to be contributing to Russia’s military.
It also targeted companies in China and Myanmar for violations of human rights.
“When we identify entities that pose a national security or foreign policy concern for the United States, we add them to the Entity List to ensure we can scrutinize their transactions,” Assistant Commerce Secretary Thea Kendler said in statement.
“We cannot allow our adversaries to misuse and abuse technology to commit human rights abuses and other acts of oppression, “Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Enforcement Matthew Axlrod said.
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