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Beijing Pushes Back Against Trump Administration Efforts To Halt Slave Labor In Xinjiang

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Saturday, Jan 09, 2021 - 06:45 PM

When push came to shove, the NYSE showed Americans just how badly the globalists depend on China, when it resisted an executive order to delist Chinese telcos.

The exchange's embarrassing flipflop comes as the Trump Administration does what it can to hammer the CCP for its persecution of Muslims in Xinjing. Yet, as Trump and liberals finally come together to champion the cause of human rights, Americans who have demanded the US do whatever it can to protect Hong Kongers, the people of Taiwan and Muslims in Xinjiang are suddenly being drowned out by tech giants, including Twitter, Facebook, Apple but also Shopify, having accused Trump of "glorifying violence".

Amid all the chaos of the past week, one of Trump's most trusted national security advisors, Matt Pottinger, resigned, Just days after he delivered a presentation reiterating all the evidence he has seen to suggest that China unleashed the virus upon Wuhan on purpose.

So, with Trump administration officials (including Pottinger) abandoning ship to protect their own careers, Beijing is once again pushing back, imposing new punitive measures that will again force foreign companies to choose between acquiescing to Beijing, or Washington.

Here's more from the NYT:

China fired back at the Trump administration on Saturday with new rules that would punish global companies for complying with Washington’s tightening restrictions on doing business with Chinese companies.

China’s Ministry of Commerce said that the rules, which went into effect immediately, were intended to counter foreign laws that "unjustly prohibit or restrict" people or companies in China from doing normal business. It said its measures were necessary to safeguard China’s national sovereignty and security and to protect the rights of Chinese citizens and entities.

It's likely that China's measure could force Joe Biden to back off many of his predecessors' efforts to force China to abide by international standards on everything from labor laws (ironic, considering China is a officially Communist) to unfair state subsidies, to corporate auditing standards.

As the NYT explains, the US under Trump has passed myriad new restrictions and other punitive measures intended to isolate China, blaming the country's abuses like the ones mentioned above.

But now, Beijing is taking things one step further by enabling companies to sue in Chinese courts (essentially a guaranteed win).

Trump administration prohibited the sale of American technology to Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant, and other firms. It also issued rules that punish companies for their ties to the Chinese military and for their involvement in Beijing’s surveillance and suppression of mostly Muslim ethnic minorities in China’s far northwestern region of Xinjiang.

The new rules released on Saturday would allow Chinese officials and companies to strike back at those who comply with those U.S. limits. The Chinese measures allow government officials to issue orders saying that companies do not have to comply with certain foreign restrictions.

Chinese companies that incur losses because of another party’s compliance with those laws can sue for damages in Chinese courts, according to the Commerce Ministry’s notice. Such a case would be likely to result in a victory for a Chinese plaintiff, since China’s courts are ultimately answerable to the Communist Party.

Fortunately for the US, during his time in office, Trump never caved to China's threats to retaliate against US business, knowing that there's plenty that China buys from the US that it absolutely needs - everything from microchips to software, a fact that gives the US more built-in leverage, which Trump was happy to exploit. Economics wonks who closely monitor the bilateral trade numbers might be quick to point to the growing trade deficit with China as evidence that Trump failed in his efforts to pressure China with his trade war.

But as we pointed out a few days ago, it appears Beijing is using inflated numbers to overstate exports, a classic way of getting capital into a country with capital controls.

As recent reports have shown us, companies from around the world sell products that involved the forced labor of Uygher Muslims essentially forced to work for free (either that, or they get shipped off to a reeducation camp). Instead of trying to hide this, Beijing is celebrating it, twisting the truth via the state-controlled media, which recently touted the forced sterilization of Uygher women.

Now, Beijing is once again about to force Washington and others to call its bluff by essentially reviving its threats to create an "unreliable entities" list. Trump didn't fall for it, but after spending the last year in his basement, can we trust Joe Biden to stand his ground?

Or is this where all those payments to Hunter Biden will finally pay dividends for Beijing?

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