Author Topic: Decoupling from China  (Read 9814 times)

Crafty_Dog

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Decoupling from China
« on: April 28, 2020, 06:05:17 PM »
Relying on Foreign Drugs Is Dangerous
Generics are often made in India, with ingredients from China. Time to diversify the supply chain..
By Scott W. Atlas and H.R. McMaster
April 28, 2020 1:07 pm ET

Health security is critical to national security. The Covid-19 pandemic is a moment to re-evaluate U.S. dependence on China for pharmaceutical ingredients and to solidify the pharmaceutical supply chain in advance of proliferating threats.

Americans filled the equivalent of 5.8 billion 30-day prescriptions in 2018. That doesn’t count the hundreds of millions of vaccinations administered annually. In 2019 the Food and Drug Administration estimated that 40% of finished medications and 80% of active pharmaceutical ingredients were manufactured overseas, mainly in China and India.

While U.S. pharmaceutical companies may preserve redundancy in their sources for patented drugs, the generic drug business, which accounts for more than 90% of all U.S. prescriptions, prioritizes low cost over supply-chain resiliency. Most generics, including antibiotics, are imported from India—and India imports some 70% of its active ingredients from China. America needs to understand and diversify sources of supply, as well as maintain a strategic reserve of antibiotics and the key drugs for the most prevalent serious diseases.

Beyond scale and complexity, details on drug manufacturing are opaque and complex. The Food and Drug Administration requires country-of-origin markings, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in February that processing ingredients into tablets in the U.S. is enough to constitute “manufacturing.” A drug made into tablets in the U.S. with active ingredients from India may list only the U.S. as “principal place of business” for FDA purposes. Labeling should be straightforward, but not at the sacrifice of security.

Protecting the drug supply also requires guarding against poor-quality and counterfeit medications, a repeated problem of medications from China in particular. Although the FDA conducts 3,500 inspections of generic plants a year, additional measures are necessary. More than half of FDA inspections are conducted on foreign manufacturers, but only a small minority are done unannounced in China and India. The U.S. government should require far greater on-site access and increase the funding and staff to implement that policy. It is also time to stop viewing the reimportation of drugs as a potential solution without serious downsides.

A strategy to diminish supply-chain risk must also take account of China’s dependence on U.S. drugs. The U.S. is the world’s predominant source of pharmaceutical innovation, including new cancer drugs, next-generation biopharmaceuticals and tests that determine which patients will benefit from those drugs. China is highly reliant on foreign sources of more-expensive brand-name drugs, which make up 90% of overall drug revenues, exporting only 1.2% of all medications in total value; the U.S. is among the top five exporters.

China is deeply dependent on U.S. cancer drugs in particular. Of those launched world-wide from 2013 to 2017, 51 of 54 were available within two years in the U.S. Only two were available in China. Cancer survival in China is only half that in the U.S. The Communist Party recognizes this problem. Its Healthy China 2030 Plan exempts most drugs from taxes and omits U.S. cancer drugs from tariffs placed on other medications in 2019.

China has emphasized generating new pharma patents. China now exceeds the U.S. in published applications, even though the U.S. still leads by a wide margin in patents that are ultimately granted. Mutual dependence on uninterrupted access to critical drugs, among both allies and adversaries, is a vital part of risk mitigation. Leaders should make clear that the U.S. will never withhold pharmaceuticals from other nations for coercive or punitive purposes, except when faced with hostile actions, such as acts of war.

Perhaps most important, policies must encourage pharma innovation and production. Reducing vulnerability to health threats such as Covid-19 rests on American discovery and competitiveness. While the U.S. leads the world in health-care innovation, this is no reason to be complacent. Congress should strengthen tax incentives for high-risk investments in early stage medtech and life-science companies, including drug development, and target additional incentives to domestic drug manufacturing.

Developing a new drug typically costs more than $2.5 billion and takes more than a decade. Safety standards shouldn’t be compromised, but lengthy clinical trials can be streamlined. The FDA should continue the impressive work it began in 2016 to expedite drug approvals. During 2017 and 2018, yearly new drug approvals increased by around 70% relative to the eight years under the Obama administration. Finally, legislators must avoid the temptation to impose price regulation and limit patent protections. These measures delay drug launches, reduce access and crush research and development.

A secure drug supply chain couldn’t have made up for the Chinese Communist Party’s decision to conceal the threat of Covid-19. But it is essential for mobilizing resources to mitigate the crisis. And the stakes are high, even in normal times. More than 15 million American seniors, or 1 in 3, take five or more medications daily. As the U.S. population ages, society will become even more dependent on drugs indispensable to treating the biggest killers—heart disease, cancer and stroke. Preventing an interruption of the supply of vital medications that save lives and treat diseases, whether during pandemics or in routine care, is a matter of national security.

Dr. Atlas is a physician. Lt. Gen. McMaster, a retired Army officer, served as White House national security adviser, 2017-18. Both are senior fellows at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2022, 03:50:03 AM by Crafty_Dog »

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WSJ: An allied plan to depend less on China
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2020, 08:16:51 PM »
An Allied Plan to Depend Less on China
The U.S., Australia, Japan and India already have a forum for coordination.
By Paula J. Dobriansky
April 30, 2020 7:15 pm ET
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Workers in protective suits stand by a container ship in Qingdao, China, March 31.
PHOTO: /ASSOCIATED PRESS
The Covid-19 pandemic is prompting reconsideration of issues that were thought to be settled. One is the wisdom of China as a hub in vital supply chains, a reality driven by cost considerations and the belief that integrating China into the global economy would moderate Beijing’s behavior. Unfortunately, China hasn’t moderated. Beijing has been an unreliable supplier that pressures trading partners.

Roughly three-quarters of American companies report supply-chain disruptions in China, according to a spring survey conducted by the Institute for Supply Management. The Japanese and Australian economies have been severely hurt by China’s lockdown of Hubei province and other supply interruptions. China’s official Xinhua News Agency has threatened to exploit Beijing’s control over medical supply chains as retaliation against U.S. efforts to hold China accountable for its actions during the pandemic.

A re-examination is overdue. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has set aside $2.2 billion of Tokyo’s stimulus package to assist Japanese companies in relocating production from China to Southeast Asia. The White House’s Larry Kudlow has suggested that the U.S. government could pay moving costs for U.S. companies that leave China. South Korea appears to be planning to shift several important factories from China to India.

Washington and its partners in Asia should set up new supply chains, restructure trade relations, and start to create an international economic order that is less dependent on China. A multilateral “coalition of the willing” approach would better align trading ties with political and security relationships. It would also help India and nations in Southeast Asia develop more rapidly, becoming stronger U.S. partners.

The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue is an optimal venue. Established by Prime Minister Abe in 2007 to discuss regional security issues, the Quad’s members are Japan, India, Australia and the U.S. In 2017 the Trump administration launched a free and open Indo-Pacific initiative, designed to support U.S. relations with India and offset China’s efforts to establish regional dominance. This further enhanced the importance of the Quad. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held the first ministerial-level Quad meeting in September.

The Quad’s agenda should be broadened to include economic security, and the group could bring in partners like South Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam, in a “Quad Plus” format. Vietnam would be particularly worthy. U.S.-Vietnamese relations have improved dramatically in the past several years. Hanoi shares U.S. concerns about aggressive Chinese behavior and has been striving to become a leader in global supply-chain management and manufacturing.

The Quad-Plus should drive an agenda that balances economic, political and security imperatives. Rather than seeking to bring all supply chains to the U.S. or reorder all trade, it should focus on the most critical industries. The point would be to pair economic concerns with national-security aims, protect intellectual property, and ensure reliable access to public-health goods—so the U.S. is no longer at the mercy of Beijing for supplies in a pandemic.

Ms. Dobriansky is a senior fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center. She served as undersecretary of state for global affairs, 2001-09.

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George Schultz: China has Troubles of Its Own
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2020, 06:40:58 PM »
China Has Troubles of Its Own
Its economic growth is likely to slow dramatically as its population ages and labor force shrinks.
By George P. Shultz
Aug. 26, 2020 11:53 am ET


People are justifiably worried about China. It is wrecking Hong Kong and has lost international trust in the process, which makes it difficult to form future deals with its leadership. China’s divide-and-conquer diplomacy abroad, particularly toward countries smaller than the U.S., is aggressive and immature. Xi Jinping’s statist economic strategy has returned to the Maoist model, putting private enterprise under the thumb of the Communist Party at home and exploiting foreign trade relationships.

I support efforts to call out such outrageous behavior—and to work with partners and allies, who largely agree with us about this—to develop the most effective approach possible to deal with it.

Americans long underestimated China’s progress and its leaders’ ambitions. I reluctantly accept that today’s China is different from the one I once worked with constructively. But as we deal with the present, we should also consider future relations with a country that faces significant emerging internal structural problems. China’s next 20 years are unlikely to repeat its past 20.

Take the labor force. Growth in gross domestic product is a factor of a country’s labor-force and productivity growth. Deng Xiaoping once told me how the ingenuity and hard work of the Chinese people would power huge advances, given market liberalizations. That combined with an explosion in the pool of available workers—a youthful population bulge, plus migration from farms to cities. China’s GDP grew from 11% of the U.S.’s in 1997 to 63% two decades later, in the process lifting hundreds of millions out of abject poverty. But the labor force of Mr. Xi’s China is now declining—in contrast to the steady, immigration-driven growth of the U.S.—and is projected to lose 174 million workers by midcentury. To borrow a phrase from the political economist Nicholas Eberstadt, this will “bound the realm of the possible” in the Chinese economy.

A Shrinking Workforce
China's population by age, in millions, 1950-2100
Source: U.N. World Population Prospects, Adele Hayutin
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Meanwhile, the Chinese population over 65 is set to double by 2050 to nearly 400 million. Many will need housing or other public assistance. A heretofore young, productive and risk-taking China budgets for essentially no social safety net. Successive generations of only children—as early as 1990, four-fifths of Shanghainese children had no siblings—have upended the traditional family model of caring for the elderly. And selection of boys during the era of the one-child policy means that now the country has a shortage of women. That doesn’t amount to a no-child policy, but it may produce a no-child result.

China today is no Potemkin Soviet Union—it has trillions of dollars in foreign currency reserves and is deeply integrated into global supply chains. But having consumed more cement in three years than the U.S. did in a century, excess capacity now plagues domestic industries and drives China’s global scramble for outward infrastructure lending.

Serious economic and equity tensions, for example in health and education outcomes, have grown up between urban and rural regions and will drive a need for cross-subsidy. Mr. Xi’s turn toward lending to fill in for slowing growth means local governments and businesses are now swamped in contingent debts, often off-book. An example is high-speed rail. State-owned China Railway took on nearly $1 trillion in debt to build that sprawling network; a few major lines are profitable, but most are not, and interest payments alone exceed operating revenues.

As Americans again debate their own attitudes toward the role of government, we should recall that Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher’s calls for markets and personal freedom as engines of human prosperity were heard in Beijing, too; their insights helped power Deng and Jiang Zemin’s economic ascent. But Mr. Xi’s campaign to stamp out intellectual discourse in China has threatened those reforms—and therefore the country’s economic prospects.

Perhaps sensing the change in trend lines ahead, China has undertaken a slate of narrowly self-interested foreign policies. Having been secretary of state, I can attest to the diplomatic and military costs, expertise and experience that go into developing and maintaining an outward global posture. But with its current approach, I suspect China will struggle to win over durable partners in such efforts. In the process, there is a risk that our two countries stumble into confrontation due to missteps or mutual miscalculation.

China misunderstands us, too. To reduce the temptation for opportunism by anyone, including China, Americans must do better on our own challenges: government debt, stagnating and inequitable educational outcomes in disciplines that will define our future prosperity and security, and the demographic need for a reasonable and consistent immigration policy.

We should quietly develop specific off-ramps from conflict with China—e.g., rules of the road for military ships and aircraft with a communication mechanism to address any incidents; stockpiling of important traded goods such as pharmaceuticals, rare earths or agricultural products—that would improve mutual stability. It is important that leaders here—and leaders there—work from a realistic view of China’s position, our own position, and our collective future.

Mr. Shultz is a distinguished fellow at the Hoover Institution. He was labor secretary, director of the Office of Management and Budget and Treasury secretary under President Nixon and secretary of state under President Reagan.


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Re: Decoupling from China
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2021, 08:19:30 AM »
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Decoupling from Chinese chips
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2021, 11:31:46 AM »

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WSJ: Didi Global looking into decoupling from Wall Street
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2021, 02:49:00 AM »
Investors punished shares of Chinese companies traded in the U.S. on Friday as Didi Global Inc. DIDI -22.18% searched for ways to back out of its New York stock listing months after the initial public offering drew Beijing’s ire.

The Chinese ride-hailing company’s decision to delist its American depositary shares from the New York Stock Exchange and pursue a listing in Hong Kong marked a new stage in the decoupling of Chinese companies from U.S. markets.

Declines cascaded broadly through U.S.-listed Chinese firms, with stock in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. falling 8.2%, cutting some $27 billion from the company’s market value. Pinduoduo Inc. retreated 8.2%, Baidu Inc. declined 7.8%. and JD.com Inc. fell 7.7%.

Didi’s beaten-up stock fell more, dropping 22% to $6.07—below its $14-a-share IPO price.

Didi didn’t give any rationale for the delisting, which it said has received support from its board and would later require a shareholder vote. The company ran into trouble with Beijing almost immediately after its $4.4 billion initial public offering. The IPO blindsided Chinese regulators, who launched a data-security review, pulled Didi products from Chinese app stores and began a broader overhaul of the framework for international listings by Chinese companies.

Didi’s announcement came as Washington has been taking a hawkish stance on Chinese companies listed in the U.S. and Beijing is calling its companies to return home. On Thursday, the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted rules that will formalize the process for Chinese companies to be expelled from the U.S. stock market, if they fail to hand over their audit working papers for three years in a row.


Chinese tech stocks popular among U.S. investors have tumbled amid the country’s regulatory crackdown on technology firms. WSJ explains some of the new risks investors face when buying shares of companies like Didi or Tencent. Photo illustration: Michelle Inez Simon

The key question is how Didi can depart the U.S. stock market, where investors who bought into the IPO have been sitting on losses for months, after Beijing’s regulatory assault tanked the company’s share price.

The cleanest solution would be for Didi to float in Hong Kong before concluding a U.S. delisting. The option would create the least chaos and is currently a more preferred route by the company as well as Beijing, according to people familiar with the matter. Chinese regulators had nudged the company toward a Hong Kong listing, The Wall Street Journal reported in October.

Didi has asked investment banks to come up with proposals on how a Hong Kong listing and New York delisting might work, according to people familiar with the matter.

One plan that has emerged involves a dual listing in Hong Kong and using the money raised there to buy back Didi’s American depositary shares in the U.S., the people said. That could lead to a move to pink-sheet trading in the U.S. as trading in Didi shares tilts toward Hong Kong, and an eventual complete U.S. delisting, though a dual listing could be in place for a long time, they said.

The Cyberspace Administration of China recently signaled to Didi that it wanted the company to delist from the U.S. by the first half of 2022, according to one of the people familiar with the matter.

Didi is aiming for a Hong Kong listing as soon as the first quarter of 2022, people familiar with the matter said. In doing so, it would join a series of U.S.-traded Chinese companies, including Alibaba, that have obtained so-called homecoming listings since late 2019. This, however, puts the Hong Kong stock exchange and securities regulator in a bind, as Didi currently doesn’t meet the city’s listing requirements.


Unlike most of its counterparts, Didi would probably have to seek what is called a dual-primary listing, given its short lifespan as a public company, rather than going through the less onerous “secondary listing” process that Alibaba and many others used. The Hong Kong exchange requires companies to be listed elsewhere for at least two years before seeking a secondary listing governed by more lenient regulations.

A dual-primary listing is nearly equivalent to a full-blown Hong Kong IPO, and subjects the company to all of the city’s governance and disclosure requirements.


Didi is aiming for a Hong Kong listing as soon as the first quarter of 2022, people familiar with the matter said.
PHOTO: JADE GAO/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES
Didi had been aiming to conduct its IPO in Hong Kong up until earlier this year, but it had to abandon that plan because the company didn’t meet some of the Hong Kong stock exchange’s requirements, the Journal has reported.

The exchange demands listing applicants’ businesses be compliant with local laws and regulations, and fully licensed, in all the markets in which they operate. The frameworks governing ride-hailing vary across provinces and municipalities in China, and Didi and some of its Chinese rivals are far from meeting that requirement.


As of October, Didi Chuxing, the company’s flagship business in China, was 43% compliant, according to the country’s Ministry of Transport. That compares with 35.6% in March, when Didi was still exploring a Hong Kong IPO.

“The Hong Kong stock exchange has a very high threshold for compliance,” said Mike Suen, a Hong Kong-based partner specializing in IPOs at the law firm Withers.

“It is a difficult path for Didi if they want to list in Hong Kong, unless the stock exchange grants exemptions,” he added. “The exchange would also have to justify the reason for granting exemptions. You can’t say because Didi is big, we have to grant the exemption.”

The Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong is prepared to grant exemptions, one person familiar with the matter said.

A costlier alternative for Didi would be for a bidding consortium, perhaps including some of Didi’s major shareholders, to bid for the shares they don’t already own. In July, the Journal reported that Didi was considering going private, partly to placate regulators.


Given Didi’s size—after Friday’s plunge it had a market capitalization just above $29 billion—the financing requirements would run into the billions of dollars, and selling shareholders would have to be offered a premium to relinquish their stakes. The option is falling out of favor because of the capital and political costs, according to people familiar with the matter.

Didi’s pre-IPO shareholders will be able to sell shares near the end of this month, as a 180-day lockup period comes to an end. Its prominent investors include Uber Technologies Inc., SoftBank Group Corp. and Tencent Holdings, all of which have substantial stakes in the company.

Conrad Saldanha, senior portfolio manager for Neuberger Berman’s emerging-markets equity strategy, said the broad selloff of U.S.-listed Chinese stocks shows the risk in holding them while rhetoric and regulation between the two countries are heightened.

Mr. Saldanha said his strategy didn’t participate in Didi’s IPO in part because of regulatory concerns. Last year his mutual-fund portfolio started to move its stake in Alibaba from American depositary shares to the company’s Hong Kong-listed stock.

“By and large, our exposure is all migrated to Hong Kong-listed shares,” he said of the Alibaba investment.

The SEC’s move brings U.S.-listed shares of Chinese companies that don’t comply with the regulations closer to being delisted, said Louis Lau, director of investments at Brandes Investment Partners.

“Our base case is to prepare for delisting,” Mr. Lau said. He said his firm, which owns U.S.-listed stock in Chinese companies, hasn’t adjusted its positions in them on the news, as it is watching for Beijing’s reaction.

—Raffaele Huang, Corrie Driebusch and Dave Sebastian contributed to this article.

Write to Jing Yang at Jing.Yang@wsj.com and Keith Zhai at keith.zhai@wsj.com

Copyright ©2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8
Appeared in the December 4, 2021, print edition as 'Chinese Shares Rocked As Didi Seeks to Delist.'

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WSJ: Elon Musk, Tesla, & China
« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2021, 02:57:02 AM »

BUSINESS
Elon Musk Needs China. China Needs Him. The Relationship Is Complicated.
To attract Tesla, the government rewrote its rules for foreign auto businesses, but now, the company is entering bumpier terrain


By Lingling Wei, Rebecca Elliott and Trefor Moss
Dec. 4, 2021 12:00 am ET


With the U.S. tightening technology exports to China in 2018, President Xi Jinping defiantly pledged to make China the world’s future innovation and industrial center. Key to his plan was Elon Musk.

Mr. Xi viewed the South African-born entrepreneur as a technology utopian with no political allegiance to any country, according to officials involved in policy-making, and saw his Tesla Inc. TSLA -6.42% as a spearhead that could make China a power in new-energy cars.

Mr. Xi rewrote the rulebook to allow foreign companies sole ownership of auto ventures so Mr. Musk would open an electric-vehicle factory in Shanghai. Authorities showered him with cheap land, low-interest loans and tax incentives, expecting in return that Tesla would groom local suppliers and bolster lagging Chinese electric-vehicle players, say people with knowledge of the talks between Beijing and the company.

Today Tesla likely makes more than half its vehicles in China, suggest calculations based on the company’s third-quarter production and delivery figures and China Passenger Car Association data. Chinese sales helped propel Tesla to its first full year of profitability in 2020 and provided roughly a fourth of Tesla’s revenue in the first nine months of 2021. Mr. Musk, meanwhile, has cemented his place as the world’s wealthiest person.


But Tesla is facing an increasingly difficult business environment in China now. It has drawn wrath from domestic rivals over what they see as preferential treatment, suffers criticism of its vehicle quality from drivers and Chinese officials, and has been caught up in the government’s sweeping crackdown on big tech.

China is pressing foreign companies to meet an ever-more-stringent policy on data security. Tesla now must retain inside the country all digital records gathered from local customers, and it must ask authorities for approval before updating certain software on cars in China.


Tesla’s Shanghai factory under construction in May 2019. Chinese authorities provided cheap land and low-interest loans, expecting in return that Tesla would groom local suppliers and spur the Chinese electric-vehicle industry.
PHOTO: IMAGINECHINA/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Mr. Musk’s response to the pressure has been to become a high-profile cheerleader of China’s ruling Communist Party, in sharp contrast to his renegade persona in the U.S., where he has clashed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and mocked President Biden in tweets, once calling him a labor union sock puppet.

“The economic prosperity that China has achieved is truly amazing, especially in infrastructure!” Mr. Musk tweeted when the party celebrated its centenary on July 1.

Mr. Musk has hailed China’s toughened data laws, and his company issued a humbling apology in April. A driver at an auto show publicly blamed Tesla brakes for an accident, after which China’s top legal-affairs agency chimed in, calling the company arrogant. A short time later, Tesla said on China’s Twitter -like Weibo platform: “We apologize for failing to resolve the problem of the car owner in time. We will try our best to learn the lessons of this experience.”

Tesla thus finds itself falling within a familiar historical pattern, in which Beijing uses a grant of access to its vast market to advance China’s own industrial capability.

After Apple Inc. brought its iPhone supply chain to China years ago, many of the Chinese companies Apple trained also became suppliers to Chinese smartphone manufacturers, which now lead the world in sales.

Apple has a healthy 11% market share in China. But another Western tech giant, Microsoft Corp. , which first opened a China office in 1992, now finds itself hamstrung by the country’s nationalism in areas such as cloud storage. Microsoft recently said it would shut down the localized version of its LinkedIn platform in China, citing the challenging operating environment.

“China’s game isn’t to let Tesla win,” said Bill Russo, founder of Automobility, a Shanghai-based consulting firm. “China’s game is to make the domestic industry compete.”

The Information Office of the State Council, China’s top government body, didn’t answer questions for this article. Mr. Musk and Tesla didn’t respond to requests for comment. Microsoft said it would continue to have a strong presence in China. Apple didn’t respond to a request for comment.

From the outset, officials in Beijing made clear they wanted something in return for throwing open the country to Tesla, according to the people with knowledge of the parties’ 2018 talks.

Chinese leaders had grown frustrated with domestic electric-vehicle companies’ performance and saw Tesla as an opportunity to reset the country’s auto industry. Tesla would be expected to localize its supply chain and groom Chinese manufacturers, steps that could accelerate the domestic industry.


Miao Wei, who negotiated on the deal with Mr. Musk, openly discussed how Tesla could propel underachieving local EV startups. He likened it to lobbing a predatory catfish into a pond full of sluggish fish. Representatives for the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, which Mr. Miao then led, didn’t respond to questions.

Mr. Musk long expressed interest in a plant in China that would help Tesla sell cars for less in the world’s largest auto market, but he didn’t want to take on a Chinese partner in a joint venture as other foreign auto makers had.

Made-in-China sales
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In July 2018, Tesla signed a deal to build a factory in Shanghai. Chinese authorities lauded the deal for the jobs it would create and for the roughly $345 million in annual taxes Tesla is expected to start generating at the end of 2023, according to regulatory disclosures. Beijing’s embrace of Mr. Musk was so warm that at a meeting in 2019, Premier Li Keqiang offered to give him a “Chinese green card.” Mr. Musk let the premier take a Tesla for a spin within the gated Zhongnanhai leadership compound.

Some at Tesla bristled at aspects of the push into China, concerned about issues including a risk of intellectual-property theft, a person familiar with the matter said.

As in the West, Tesla’s arrival whetted people’s interest in electric vehicles. The 2019 launch of the made-in-China Tesla Model 3 helped convince consumers such vehicles were a viable alternative to gasoline cars.

Tesla proved an effective “catfish,” too: Its Chinese-made cars restored the confidence of Chinese investors in the electric-vehicle market, helping supercharge domestic startups that had struggled.

NIO Inc., for instance, was close to collapse but secured investment in April 2020 and saw a revival in its share price that led to further fundraising. It has thrived in Tesla’s slipstream, as have two Chinese peers that sell premium electric vehicles, Li Auto Inc. and XPeng Inc. The three companies’ electric-vehicle sales are likely to total more than 270,000 this year, up from around 12,000 in 2018, according to a forecast by consulting firm ZoZo Go LLC.

“Pre-Tesla, nobody believed that a Chinese brand could be riveting,” said Michael Dunne, chief executive of ZoZo Go and a former General Motors Co. executive. ZoZo Go expects overall sales in China of new-energy vehicles—including electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles—to be roughly 3.1 million this year, more than double last year’s.

A spokeswoman for NIO said the company appreciates Tesla’s efforts to spur the development of the electric-vehicle industry.


The Tesla effect also lifted the supply chain, meeting a key goal of China’s leaders. Tesla has sent engineers to train workers, help with design and research and impart know-how at firms ranging from a battery maker to die-casting processors.

In early 2021, Tesla said it had reached a “domestic supply sourcing ratio” of over 90% at its Shanghai factory. Tom Zhu, its top China executive, has said Tesla is on track to source all of its vehicle components locally by year-end.

“There were previously a ton of parts that were made in other parts of the world that were being shipped to Shanghai,” Mr. Musk said in a July 2020 earnings call. “Just locally sourcing those components makes a massive difference to the cost of the vehicle.”

Tesla engineers worked with Chinese battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd. , known as CATL, to tailor products to Tesla’s needs. A 2020 supply deal with Tesla affirmed the company’s place as a top-tier battery maker.


A supplier of housings for components and hydraulic systems relies on Tesla for roughly half its business. Ningbo Xusheng Auto Technology Co. said in its 2020 annual report that through its cooperation with Tesla, it has “accumulated technologies relating to the design, R&D and production of electric-vehicle parts,” helping it “occupy a top position in the electric-vehicle parts industry.” Ningbo’s 2020 revenue tripled its 2016 level.

Rival electric-vehicle companies in China are now taking aim at Tesla, many of them unhappy about what they perceive as officials’ preferential treatment of a foreign car maker. Some rivals have done so by leveraging Beijing’s broader clampdown on how data is handled by tech behemoths.

They include a company called 360, which started out as a cybersecurity firm, and state-owned vehicle giant SAIC Motor Corp. The two companies in March urged China’s legislature to address national-security concerns associated with foreign electric-vehicle makers. Their target was Tesla, according to people with knowledge of the discussions between the companies and officials.


Zhou Hongyi, 360’s founder, suggested that China adopt laws and regulations limiting the collection of geographic information from users of electric vehicles, according to state media reports. State media also said Chen Hong, SAIC’s Communist Party secretary and chairman, proposed that the collection, storage and commercial use of data collected by these vehicles be filed and managed by the Chinese government.

Media representatives at 360 and SAIC didn’t respond to inquiries.

Beijing restricted the use of Tesla cars on military bases and other sensitive government premises. Aided by a public backlash against Tesla, triggered by the driver’s complaints in April, the government in May proposed strict regulations on automotive data collection, limiting the kind of data electric-car makers could collect and forbidding them to transfer outside China any information gathered from users on China’s roads and highways.

These proposals became final in August, as per formal guidelines issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology then. A personal-data protection law that took effect on Nov. 1 could further restrain the company’s ability to gather digital information from Chinese consumers.

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The new requirements likely will make it harder for Tesla to develop and deploy autonomous vehicles in China, because these rely on an array of sensors that collect vast amounts of data, according to analysts and current and former industry executives. Tesla’s current driver-assistance features don’t make vehicles autonomous.

“The sweeping data regulation was intended, at least in part, to address escalating public debate about Tesla,” said Paul Triolo, head of global technology policy at Eurasia Group, a New York-based consulting firm, who consults with Chinese officials.

A sore point for local rivals of Tesla is a government policy aimed at encouraging auto makers to produce more electric vehicles. Companies that don’t build enough must purchase credits from those that do. Tesla has been one of the chief beneficiaries of this rule.

“A lot of Chinese companies are very upset by the system,” said Scott Kennedy, a China expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank.

Tesla has used savings from having domestic suppliers to hold vehicle prices low enough for buyers to qualify for Chinese government subsidies. In July, Tesla launched a Model Y compact sport-utility vehicle that costs less than 300,000 yuan (about $47,000), enabling buyers to get these subsidies.

The Shanghai plant now is Tesla’s main export hub and helped the company introduce its Model Y to Europe, Chief Financial Officer Zachary Kirkhorn told investors in October. The factory makes more vehicles than Tesla’s plant in Fremont, Calif., Mr. Musk said in October, and underpinned the company’s record global deliveries in the third quarter.


Screens show Elon Musk speaking during the China Development Forum in Beijing in March. Mr. Musk has praised China’s prosperity as “amazing” and said Tesla is happy to see the country’s new laws on data management.
PHOTO: WU HONG/SHUTTERSTOCK

Long term, Tesla is likely to lose ground in China to domestic competitors, industry analysts say. Earlier this year, Morgan Stanley analysts forecast that Tesla would make up roughly 15% of China’s all-electric vehicle market this year but that this would fall below 7% by 2030 as homegrown companies gain traction.


“Tesla’s position in the domestic Chinese market will be substantially diluted over time through competition and policies to encourage local players,” the analysts said.

Mr. Musk remains personally popular in China, where people accustomed to conformity admire his maverick behavior in the U.S. Aspiring Chinese tech entrepreneurs look to him for inspiration, tracking moves of the “Silicon Valley Iron Man.” Some Chinese businesses have even trademarked products using the Chinese translation of his name, Ma Si Ke.

Mr. Musk may have to settle for a sizable, though not dominant, position in the Chinese market, some analysts suggest. Tesla sold more than 73,000 vehicles in China in the three months ended in September, not including exports, a record quarterly performance, China Passenger Car Association data show. Yet in a recent survey of roughly 1,600 Chinese consumers, Tesla ranked among the top auto brands to avoid, signaling that the company could be hitting a ceiling on market share, Bernstein Research analysts said.

Mr. Musk has maintained his deferential tone. In September, when China held an internet conference aimed at pushing its alternative version of the web—at a time when the government was pressing a regulatory crackdown on tech—not many of the country’s tech stars attended.

Mr. Musk spoke via video, describing how Tesla had set up a data center in China to store the digital records gathered from its production, sales, service, charging and other activities in the country.

“At Tesla, we’re glad to see a number of laws and regulations that have been released to strengthen data management,” Mr. Musk said.

—Raffaele Huang contributed to this article.

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WT: 8 Chinese complanies blacklisted
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2021, 01:30:59 AM »
Eight Chinese companies on U.S. blacklist

BY BILL GERTZ, RYAN L OVELACE AND JOSEPH CLARK THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The Treasury Department on Thursday blacklisted eight Chinese companies, including global drone market leader DJI Technology, as part of a campaign to punish what U.S. officials say is corporate support for Beijing’s illicit surveillance of minority Uyghurs and other Chinese ethnic and religious groups.

The Office of Foreign Assets Control said the eight firms were linked to biometric surveillance and tracking in China. That includes western Xinjiang province, where the State Department in January declared genocide against the local Muslim Uyghur population. The technology companies were sanctioned under a June presidential order designed to prevent American securities from financing the Chinese military.

The sanctions prohibit U.S. companies from buying or selling specific publicly traded securities linked to the companies.

“Today’s action highlights how private firms in China’s defense and surveillance technology sectors are actively cooperating with the government’s efforts to repress members of ethnic and religious minority groups,” said Brian E. Nelson, Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence. “Treasury remains committed to ensuring that the U.S. financial system and

Global drone maker penalized for links to minority repression

American investors are not supporting these activities.”

The U.S.-Chinese economic clash heated up on another front Thursday as the Senate gave final approval to a bipartisan bill to crack down on imports from Xinjiang, where the U.S. and private rights groups accuse state-supported businesses of using forced Uyghur labor. The bill now goes to President Biden, who is expected to sign it.

Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican and a lead sponsor of the measure, said many American companies have already moved away from working with Xinjiang suppliers.

“For those who have not done that,” he said, “they’ll no longer be able to continue to make Americans — every one of us, frankly — unwitting accomplices in the atrocities, in the genocide that’s being committed by the Chinese Communist Party.” The vote capped a long legislative journey for the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, which authorizes sanctions against companies that facilitate the forced labor of Muslim minority groups, including Uyghurs, in Xinjiang. It also prohibits imports from the region unless U.S. Customs and Border Protection determines that no forced labor was used in production. The ban threatens to shake up global trade patterns for products such as apparel and electronics. The Xinjiang region is also a key global exporter of electronics and agricultural goods, including cotton and tomatoes. It could also pose a particular challenge to U.S.-based solar panel manufacturers. Close to half of the world’s supply of polysilicon, a key input to solar cells, is manufactured in Xinjiang, according to a report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

The most prominent firm on the Treasury list is SZ DJI Technology Co. Ltd., the dominant player among the world’s commercial drone manufacturers with an estimated 70% of the global market. The company also provides drones for Chinese police in Xinjiang to use against Uyghur suspects. The police agency there was sanctioned in July 2020 for human rights abuses.

A DJI spokesman had no comment on the Treasury action but noted a response last year to similar action by the Commerce Department.

“DJI has done nothing to justify being placed on the Entities List,” the earlier statement said. “We have always focused on building products that save lives and benefit society. … We are evaluating options to ensure our customers, partners, and suppliers are treated fairly.”

Leon Technology, also on the blacklist, published a statement this week saying its business does not involve U.S. markets. The company said the investment blacklist would not significantly impact operations, products and services, or the bottom line. Leon stock surged as much as 15% after the company released the statement.

Supporters of the communist regime say U.S. sanctions under Presidents Trump and Biden have failed to prevent China’s rise as a technological superpower and that the effort will only end up hurting U.S. companies that rely on Chinese goods.

“Since the U.S. cannot afford to decouple with China in trade ties, it will do everything to suppress Chinese companies in the field of science and technology,” Cui Hongjian, director of the Department of European Studies at the China Institute of International Studies, told the state-controlled Global Times on Thursday.

According to the Treasury notice, the Chinese Communist Party secretary in Xinjiang, Chen Quanguo, increased repressive surveillance of Uyghurs in the region.

“Such actions included the installation of thousands of neighborhood police kiosks and ubiquitous placement of surveillance cameras, collection of biometric data for identification purposes, and more intrusive monitoring of internet use,” the notice stated.

One million to 1.8 million Uyghurs and others in ethnic and religious minority groups, including Kazakhs, were forced into “reeducation” centers that critics call concentration camps.

Mr. Chen was sanctioned in 2020 under the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act for his role in major human rights abuses.

The sanctioning of DJI is a strike against the drone maker, whose equipment was purchased by the Biden administration despite internal government warnings against the company. A spokesman for DJI did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The crackdown marks a different approach for the Biden administration.

Government procurement records show that the Secret Service purchased eight commercial surveillance drones made by DJI this year despite a Defense Department warning in July that the deal posed “potential threats to national security.” The FBI sought DJI drones at about the same time that the Secret Service made its purchases.

The Secret Service and FBI bypassed the Pentagon warning and Trump administration blacklisting. Last December, the Trump administration added DJI to the Commerce Department’s Entity List, which places restrictions on certain foreign people and companies and blocks Americans from investing in foreign enterprises that may present national security problems. The Biden administration announced Thursday that it was adding a few scores more Chinese academies, companies and others to the Commerce Department’s blacklist.

Public pressure has mounted on the Biden administration to explain its actions. Rep. Jim Banks, Indiana Republican, wrote to Attorney General Merrick Garland with questions about the Secret Service and FBI. The Washington Free Beacon reported that the lawmaker had pushed for a ban on purchases of DJI drones.

The other companies sanctioned by the Treasury are Cloudwalk Technology Co. Ltd.; Dawning Information Industry Co. Ltd.; Leon Technology Co. Ltd.; Megvii Technology Ltd.; Netposa Technologies Ltd.; Xiamen Meiya Pico Information Co. Ltd.; and Yitu Ltd.

Cloudwalk and Yitu developed facial recognition that technology critics say is being used for repression in China. The Zimbabwean government also is using Cloudwalk’s tools for mass surveillance activity.

The eight companies are also on the Commerce Department’s Entities List, which requires export licenses for interactions with U.S. firms.

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Gov DeSantis moves to take FL pension funds out of China
« Reply #11 on: December 22, 2021, 03:53:45 AM »
DeSantis aims to pull all state pension funds out of China

Investors accused of ties

BY JAMES VARNEY THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and some of his administration’s top officials moved Monday to take control of the state’s huge pension portfolio from private asset managers that invest heavily in communist China.

At a meeting of the State Board of Administration, Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis and Attorney General Ashley Moody joined Mr. DeSantis, a Republican, in a motion to “revoke all proxy voting authority that has been given to outside fund managers.”

The state officials said they need to ensure that fund managers “act solely in the financial interest of the state’s funds.”

The measure also orders a survey of the Florida Retirement System’s investments “to determine how many assets the state has in Chinese companies.”

The state took action after Consumers’ Research, a conservative watchdog group, launched a campaign accusing BlackRock, the world’s largest investment company by assets under management, of close and growing ties with Beijing.

The bond between BlackRock CEO Larry Fink

and China’s communist leaders also has drawn criticism from left-wing billionaire George Soros.

In addition to investing clients’ money in Chinese companies, BlackRock was awarded a contract to sell mutual funds in China. The venture has raked in some $1 billion, according to published reports.

“I would like the SBA to survey the investments that are currently being done,” Mr. DeSantis said in a statement. “When the Legislature comes back, they can make statutory changes to say that the Communist Party of China is not a vehicle that we want to be entangled with. I think that that would be something that would be very, very prudent.”

Figures for BlackRock’s investments in China are difficult to pinpoint, but they represent a small portion of the more than $9.6 trillion in assets that the firm manages.

BlackRock’s China A Opportunities Fund, which has returned more than 32% since its 2018 inception, has more than $47.4 million, according to its most recent report.

“BlackRock has been using their proxy votes to hamper American companies, leading to higher burdens on Americans when we can least afford it,” Consumers’ Research Executive Director Will Hild said. “They have used American investment dollars to cozy up to the Chinese Communist Party in a betrayal of our nation that puts American pension dollars at risk.”

BlackRock declined a request for comment.

Although Mr. Fink is an ardent supporter of green initiatives and BlackRock has tried to force American companies to follow an environmental agenda, China is the world’s biggest producer of greenhouse gases.

China also has been accused of numerous human rights violations, including forcing Muslimminority Uyghurs into labor camps, stifling Hong Kong’s traditional democracy, and silencing and coercing tennis star Peng Shuai over rape charges against a high government official.

National security officials have raised concerns about investments in Chinese companies that operate with the permission of the communist leadership and, in some cases, work closely with the military.

Published reports show Black-Rock has invested in at least two Chinese companies, iFlytek and Hikvision, that have been added to the U.S. “entity list” as national security and foreign policy threats.

It is not illegal to invest in such companies, although they are forbidden from trading with U.S. corporations.

Florida’s announcement is the latest in a string of state initiatives to signal that companies should focus on business and profits for shareholders rather than a political agenda.

Last month, West Virginia Treasurer Riley Moore led a coalition of 15 states that threatened to pull funds if bankers tried to stifle oil and gas companies to appease environmentalists.

Mr. Moore called the warning a “pushback against woke capitalism.”

Some top Florida officials supported Mr. DeSantis’ concern Monday.

“As Americans got our cheap goods, the Chinese government wasn’t playing by the rules when it came to intellectual property or trade,” Mr. Patronis said.

“I take my fiduciary responsibilities seriously, and I think the SBA needs to start asking harder questions when it comes to whether investing any more in China is a good idea. It seems limiting our exposure to China is not only good for our country, but it is the financially prudent thing to do for our state,” he said.

The Securities and Exchange Commission and other federal agencies have cautioned that Chinese investments can be subject to the whims of communist leaders and are outside the influence of U.S. or other regulators.

In September, the SEC warned of risks associated with variable interest entities, which are listed on U.S. stock markets but are essentially shell companies with no control over the Chinese entities.


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Corporate cowardice from Intel
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2021, 09:08:47 AM »
Intel Apologizes After Asking Suppliers to Avoid China’s Xinjiang Region
Chip maker is the latest Western company caught between Washington and Beijing

Intel displayed at an expo in Beijing in 2019; China was Intel’s largest market by revenue last year.
PHOTO: MARK SCHIEFELBEIN/ASSOCIATED PRESS
By Liza Lin
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U.S. semiconductor giant Intel Corp. INTC +1.29% apologized after setting off a social-media backlash with a letter asking suppliers to avoid sourcing from the Chinese region of Xinjiang, where the Chinese government has conducted a campaign of forcible assimilation against religious minorities.

In a letter to global suppliers, dated this month and published in several languages on its website, Intel called on its business partners to steer clear of the remote northwestern region of China, noting that “multiple governments have imposed restrictions on products sourced from the Xinjiang region. Therefore, Intel is required to ensure our supply chain does not use any labor or source goods or services from the Xinjiang region.”

By midweek, the letter had been singled out by irate Chinese social-media users and a nationalist state-run tabloid, denouncing Intel’s unwillingness to conduct business involving Xinjiang.

On Thursday, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based chip maker said its letter was written only to comply with U.S. law and didn’t represent Intel’s stance on Xinjiang.


Singer Karry Wang said he would step down as brand ambassador for Intel over the company’s letter to suppliers.
PHOTO: CHINAIMAGES/ZUMA PRESS
“We deeply apologize for the confusion caused to our respected Chinese customers, partners and the public,” Intel said in its statement, which was posted on its social-media platforms in China. Intel didn’t specify which law it was seeking to comply with.

The letter was published around the time that the U.S. Senate passed legislation last week banning imports from the Xinjiang region over concerns about the use of forced labor. President Biden signed the bill, titled the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, into law on Thursday. The U.S. and other Western governments have sought to punish Beijing over its policies toward Uyghurs and other Turkic minorities in Xinjiang, which U.S. government officials, lawmakers and human-rights activists have said amounts to genocide.

It also comes just weeks ahead of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. Intel is one of 14 global companies that have contracts with the International Olympic Committee to sponsor multiple Olympics. Human-rights groups have put pressure on Olympic sponsors to speak up on human rights or pull out ahead of the Beijing Games, which are slated to begin Feb. 4.

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First Detention, Now Demolition: China Remakes Its Muslim Region
First Detention, Now Demolition: China Remakes Its Muslim Region
After locking up as many as a million people in camps in Xinjiang, Chinese authorities are destroying Uyghur neighborhoods and purging the region's culture. They say they are fighting terrorism. Their aim: to engineer a society loyal to Beijing. Photo illustration: Sharon Shi. Video: Clément Bürge
Researchers say China’s government has detained as many as one million members of mostly Muslim minorities in a network of internment camps as part of a campaign of forcible assimilation that also includes mass surveillance, forced labor and stringent birth controls.

China’s government has rejected those allegations, portraying its campaign in Xinjiang as an innovative effort to fight religious extremism and terrorism.

It is hard to tell how organic social-media firestorms are, as Chinese authorities and technology companies heavily censor and moderate discussions within the country.

Researchers of social-media trends and disinformation analyzing Chinese activity have found Communist Party-run news outlets often amplify nationalist Chinese social-media campaigns. After Sweden’s H&M and American rival Nike Inc. were hit earlier in the year over their expressions of concern about forced labor in Xinjiang, researchers in Taiwan found state-media outlets and Communist Party-affiliated social-media accounts fanning the flames of anger online.

Multinational companies have been caught in the middle as Western governments have pressured companies to disentangle their supply chains from Xinjiang. Sportswear company Adidas AG and fast-fashion giant H&M Hennes and Mauritz AB are among those that have run afoul of social-media users in China, one of the fastest-growing large consumer markets in the world. Those that have apologized to Chinese consumers, meantime, risk a backlash from lawmakers and consumers back home.



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ET: Amer Corps subservient so as to get into Chinese market
« Reply #16 on: December 25, 2021, 06:15:52 AM »
CCP’s Economic Power Makes American Corporations ‘Subservient’ to Beijing: China Analyst
By Danella Pérez Schmieloz and Jan Jekielek December 24, 2021 Updated: December 24, 2021 biggersmaller Print
The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) economic power makes corporations and governments “subservient”, aiding Beijing’s plan to achieve global hegemony, according to a China analyst Anders Corr.

“Corporations [and]… governments are starting to fall in line with what the Chinese Communist Party wants them to do… in a way that really should concern us” Corr, principal at advisory firm Corr Analytics and author of “The Concentration of Power,” told EpochTV’s “American Thoughts Leaders.”

Corr, who also writes a column for The Epoch Times, says the CCP coerces corporations to do its bidding in exchange for access to the Chinese market, which accounts for 20 percent of the world’s economy.

Companies tend to comply with the CCP because they want to sell their products to China’s 1.4 billion people, and get cheap labor from them, according to Corr.

Such was the case with Apple, said Corr. The company reportedly made a secret deal with the CCP in 2016 to spend $275 billion in China over five years, with included the forced transfer of technology. Corr said the deal was apparently coerced as the CCP was making certain apps unavailable on Apple’s App store.

“If you prove to China, that you are on the Chinese Communist Party’s side… [by] donating $275 billion in a secret agreement to tech transfers to China, if you prove that… maybe they give you a better deal… that maximizes your short-term revenues increases your bonus as a CEO, but sells out shareholders down the road,” he said.

Corr further argued that such actions are possible due to the CCP’s concentration of power, which allows it to “act as a gatekeeper” to the Chinese market. This kind of power is unavailable to the U.S. President, because of economic freedom in the United States, he added.

Many of these companies making deals with the CCP are willing to overlook ongoing human rights abuses perpetrated by the regime out of greed, according to Corr.

Corr mentioned that some businessmen, such as billionaire hedge fund manager Ray Dalio, justify their deals with the CCP saying that they cannot get involved in rights and governance issues, and that the United States also has its own problems. But Corr believes this is an unacceptable statement.

“You can’t compare a triple genocide in China, of the Uyghurs, Tibetans and Falun Gong to what’s going on in the United States,” Corr said. “To compare the two is a total whitewash of China and a slander on the United States.”


The analyst said that the CCP has the goal to achieve “global hegemony,” which is an accepted truth in academia. He explained that the CCP uses this economic power to expand its political influence in the United States.

“The influence that Beijing has over American politics through our corporations is actually quite similar to the influence that Beijing has in other countries,” he said.

“Whether it’s Uganda, or Philippines, they wield quite a bit of power through being able to turn on and turn off imports and exports between China and all other countries in the world.”

Corr further stated Western democracies are not doing enough to counter the CCP’s expansion, and should coordinate a strategic approach to China, along with other Western countries “so that they make sure that our corporations are not selling out democracy when they’re doing business in China.”

“We should be resisting more, we should be seeing more evidence of resistance against the CCP, that we’re just not seeing. The G7… they couldn’t agree even on a diplomatic boycott of the Olympic Games when there’s three genocides going on in China,” he said.

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Re: Decoupling from China; Getting in Bed with China
« Reply #17 on: December 25, 2021, 01:26:56 PM »
Corr from Corr analytics:

“Corporations [and]… governments are starting to fall in line with what the Chinese Communist Party wants them to do… in a way that really should concern us” Corr, principal at advisory firm Corr Analytics and author of “The Concentration of Power,” told EpochTV’s “American Thoughts Leaders.”

Dah
what a great analysis  :roll:

I have been noticing this for over 20 yrs
so has all of us with us and brain
rather obvious with their first jet that looked exactly like ours .....etc

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ET: Manufacturing jobs returning?
« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2021, 02:30:10 AM »
BACK IN THE U.S.A.

Manufacturing jobs return, supply chain issues a factor

BY DAVE BOYER THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The supply chain crisis and the pandemic have reinforced an economic maxim that executives at manufacturer Acme Alliance in Northbrook, Illinois, have emphasized for two decades: Keep your operations and jobs near your customers.

A maker of custom finished aluminum die-cast components for autos, heavy trucks and agricultural machinery, Acme offi cials estimate that 20% of their U.S. sales over the past five years have brought back jobs to the U.S.

“We keep telling our customers that the best strategy is to source locally,” said Acme President Mauri Zaccarelli Mendes in an interview. “You reduce your level of inventory, your quality is better, you save a lot of costs with traveling. So finally, after this whole problem with COVID and now these logistics issues that we’ve been seeing all over the world, they realize that it makes a lot of sense.”

Other companies increasingly are following Acme’s example. The rising cost of doing business in China also makes it more attractive to move jobs back to the U.S., analysts say.

The “reshoring” of jobs to the U.S. from overseas is expected to reach more than 200,000 this year, higher than the previous peak of 180,000 jobs in 2017, when the Trump administration’s regulatory relief and business tax cuts were starting to take effect, said Harry Moser, president of the Reshoring Initiative, which tracks jobs returning to the U.S.

“The pandemic and the supply chain disruptions that resulted have made companies more aware that being dependent on something that’s coming from halfway around the world, has to get through two ports across the ocean and is coming from a potential adversary, China in this case, that there’s more risk than they thought there was,” Mr. Moser said.

The development has benefi ted states such as Ohio, which is marketing itself as “an open and secure supply chain location.” At least 37 companies have announced this year the reshoring of a total of more than 12,000 jobs in Ohio, which offers a variety of grants to encourage employers to relocate there.

Foreign direct investment in U.S. manufacturing reached a new record of $1.88 trillion in 2020, according to the National Association of Manufacturers. In 2005, the level was $499.9 billion. NAM said it expects continued growth in this sector, partly due

to “more companies reevaluating their supply chain in the midst of current disruptions.”

Among the largest businesses returning U.S. jobs in the past decade are General Motors, Boeing, Toyota, Mahindra, Volkswagen, Volvo, Caterpillar and Intel Corp.

The shortage of semiconductor chips is playing a prominent role in rising foreign direct investment in the U.S.

Samsung Electronics Co. announced last month its plans to build a $17 billion chip-making plant in Taylor, Texas, which is expected to create about 1,800 jobs. The town offered major propertytax breaks to the South Korean giant.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. plans to spend $100 billion over the next three years to build new chip factories, as does Intel Corp., with proposals for new factories in the U.S. and Europe.

The Biden administration is encouraging more U.S. production of semiconductors and electric-vehicle batteries, and lawmakers are pushing for $52 billion in industry subsidies for new semiconductor-making plants.

The governors of Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Kansas and California urged House leaders last month to pass the CHIPS Act, which has been approved by the Senate.

The U.S. accounted for 12% of global production capacity of semiconductors in 2020 — down from 37% in 1990, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association.

While the relative cost of wages and benefits in the U.S. historically has prompted companies to offshore jobs, wages in China have been rising 10% to 15% per year for the last 20 years, Mr. Moser said. More companies in recent years are looking at a “total cost of ownership” model that factors in trade disputes, increased U.S. competitiveness and rising Chinese wages, he said.

“The Chinese labor costs to make a typical part expressed in dollars is now five times as high as it was 20 years ago, and the U.S. has stayed almost constant,” he said.

Manufacturer Victaulic, which makes pipe-joining systems, announced plans in 2017 to spend tens of millions of dollars expanding plants in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania. Company officials said one consideration was that parts from China could take six weeks to arrive in the U.S., while filling orders from its U.S. operations instead could be done in a matter of days.

Acme Alliance also has plants in China and Brazil but focuses on supplying its customers from the manufacturing source closest to them.

“When you see supply chains that are stretched across the world, and you have any sort of interference, you see what the issues are,” said Matt Thavis, Acme’s director of value stream development. “So our model is we are a global company. We are big believers in regional sourcing. We don’t warehouse any parts here [in the U.S.] that are made in China.”

Despite the firm’s success, Mr. Mendes said Acme also is struggling with late orders due to supply chain problems with vendors who “don’t have enough components to finish the product.” He also said the company has been unable to fill some positions because of the U.S. labor shortage.

“We are still not able to hire more people. It’s pretty hard,” Mr. Mendes said. “Even if it’s a little bit over average wage, we are not able to get people.”

Mr. Thavis said Acme hasn’t based its decisions on incentives or other policies coming out of Washington.

“We don’t rely on politics to do business,” he said. “We just think that our model makes sense. It’s just the kind of a decree that if you’re going to assemble and sell goods within a region, it makes sense to source those components within that region.”

The progress in bringing back jobs to the U.S. hasn’t completely reversed an offshoring trend that has been decades in the marking. A recent survey by the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai found that 71% of U.S. manufacturers had no plans to move production out of China, while only 4% said they would transfer some to the U.S., Barrons reported last year.

And U.S. companies have directly invested about $260 billion in Chinese operations since the early 1990s, according to an analysis from the Rhodium Group.

Still, Mr. Moser says there has been a “tangible shift in corporate decisionmaking.” He said the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) in the U.S. at the start of the pandemic in 2020 accelerated a reshoring process that had already begun.

“Now that makes the companies more sensitive to all these other related disruption issues,” he said.


CLOSER TO HOME: More companies are “reshoring” manufacturing jobs to the U.S. That number is expected to reach more than 200,000 this year. Rising costs in China and supply chain issues are factors in the move. ASSOCIATED PRESS


STRATEGY: Acme Alliance, a U.S. company, has worked to keep operations and jobs near its customers. Employees like Jose Pena live in the U.S. ACME ALLIANCE

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ET: China's buying spree of US farmland
« Reply #19 on: December 28, 2021, 06:32:50 AM »
China’s Buying Spree of US Farmland
By Frank Fang December 9, 2021 Updated: December 11, 2021 biggersmaller Print
China has been buying up agricultural land in the United States for years, a trend that a U.S. lawmaker said must end in order to safeguard the U.S. food supply chain.

For this reason, Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.) introduced an amendment to the House’s fiscal year 2022 agriculture appropriations legislation (H.R.4356) in June. In a recent interview with NTD, the lawmaker explained what his amendment would do.

“China, frankly, is an adversary. We want to make sure that we control our food supply. I think it’s a natural, important, national security issue,” Newhouse said.

The amendment was adopted unanimously by the House Appropriations Committee on June 30. On July 29, the House approved the agriculture appropriations legislation as part of a package of seven 2022 spending measures (H.R.4502).

If enacted, the amendment would empower the secretary of agriculture to prohibit the purchase of agricultural land in the United States by companies owned by China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia, according to the language of the legislation. In China, there’s no distinction between private businesses and state-owned companies, since the Chinese Communist Party can exercise control over private firms through Chinese law or through embedded Party cells.

The measure also would prohibit the four countries from taking part in programs administered by the secretary of agriculture.

Newhouse said the current language of his amendment has been changed. He had initially named only China (pdf), but not the three other nations.

“During the rules process, it was changed somewhat by the Democrats to include several other countries,” he said. “But the fact remains that communist China is the threat. They’re the ones that are buying up most of the assets of that list of nefarious countries that are not our friends. And that’s where the focus should be.”

Chinese firms have been buying U.S. agricultural land for the past decade. According to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Chinese investors controlled 191,652 acres in the United States worth about $1.86 million before the start of 2020, compared to 13,720 acres, worth $81,425, as of the end of 2010.

Epoch Times Photo
Workers inside Smithfield Foods’ Sioux Falls, S.D., pork processing plant wear protective gear and are separated by plastic partitions as they carve up meat on May 20, 2020. (Courtesy Smithfield Foods via AP)
Buying Companies
One of the deals involved China’s meat processor WH Group, which purchased Virginia-based Smithfield Foods for $4.7 billion in 2013. With the purchase, the Chinese company now owns the largest pork producer in the United States, as well as 146,000 acres of prime farmland.

Another deal involved two Chinese entrepreneurs who bought a 22,000-acre ranch in Utah in 2011 to grow alfalfa and export it to China.

China’s agricultural investments haven’t been limited to the United States. According to a 2018 USDA report (pdf), China’s direct overseas investments in agriculture, forestry, and fishing jumped to $3.3 billion in 2016 from $300 million in 2009. The report found that these overseas investments were closely aligned with the communist regime’s policies, including the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI).

“Chinese officials have ambitious strategic plans for agricultural investments to reshape patterns of agricultural trade and increase China’s influence in global markets,” the report reads.


Beijing launched the BRI in 2013 to develop Beijing-centered land and maritime trade routes in an effort to boost the country’s geopolitical influence.

Chinese overseas investments also include buying and investing in foreign agribusinesses. According to the report, WH Group acquired California-based pork processor Clougherty Packing and a meat and poultry processing company in Poland in 2017.

Another Chinese firm, Brights Food, invested in seven foreign companies between 2010 and 2016, according to the report. These companies included a dairy firm in New Zealand, a yogurt company in Australia, a wine business in France, a cereal company in the UK, and an olive oil company in Italy.

Newhouse said he took “proactive” action with his amendment to address the challenge posed by Chinese investments before “the problem gets so big that we can’t correct it.”

“We see the trend,” he said. “We see the number of acres and companies that have been purchased by the communist government of China. And we should stop it now.”







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Prof pleads guilty
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2022, 12:22:28 PM »
Former Arkansas Professor Pleads Guilty to Lying About China Patents
By Mimi Nguyen Ly January 22, 2022 Updated: January 22, 2022biggersmaller Print

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A former professor at the University of Arkansas (UA) on Friday pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the FBI about patents for his inventions in China.

Simon Saw-Teong Ang, 64, of Fayetteville, had 24 patents filed in China under his name or Chinese birth name, listing him as one of the co-inventors, according to court documents (pdf).

Despite a requirement from the University of Arkansas to disclose all inventions and patents, the Malaysian-born former professor, who is an American citizen, did not disclose the patents.

When questioned by the FBI whether his name would be listed as the inventor of numerous patents in China, he denied being the inventor: “Yeah, I am not the inventor. I don’t even know what that is,” he told FBI Special Agent Jonathan Willet.

Under a policy from the University of Arkansas, it would own all inventions created by those subject to the policy.

Separately, Ang also did not disclose to the university in conflict of interest disclosure forms that he had received numerous talent awards from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the Department of Justice noted.

Ang entered a guilty plea to count 58 on a superseding indictment, charging him with making a materially false and fictitious, statement and representation to an FBI Special Agent, the department announced.

His sentencing is expected in about four months. He faces a maximum of five years in prison. However, the plea agreement also stated that if the court seeks to sentence Ang to not a year and a day in federal prison, he will have the right to withdraw from the plea agreement.

Separately, Ang was arrested in May 2020 on wire fraud charges over his alleged ties to the Chinese regime. Ang had joined UA in 1998 and was the director of the university’s High Density Electronics Center (HiDEC) at the time of his arrest. He was suspended by UA without pay shortly after his arrest and fired less than two months later.

The Justice Department said at the time of his arrest that Ang concealed he had “received money and benefits from China and was closely associated with various companies based in China during the same time he was receiving grants from various United States Government agencies,” including NASA.

In July, he was indicted by a federal grand jury. He pleaded not guilty. Altogether, he faces 55 counts of wire fraud and two counts of passport fraud. A jury trial over these charges is scheduled to begin on Feb. 7.

Ang’s case is listed under the “China Initiative,” which was launched under the Trump administration’s Department of Justice in November 2018. The initiative seeks to prosecute cases of economic espionage and trade secret theft backed by the CCP against the United States.

“About 80 percent of all economic espionage prosecutions brought by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) allege conduct that would benefit the Chinese state, and there is at least some nexus to China in around 60 percent of all trade secret theft cases,” according to the department.

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D1: FBI investigating Chinese investment in amphibious sport plane
« Reply #27 on: January 24, 2022, 08:47:14 AM »
The U.S. government is investigating Chinese investment in a U.S. aircraft startup, the Wall Street Journal reports. The FBI and Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. are looking into Chinese investment into California-based amphibious sport plane maker Icon Aircraft. A Chinese government-backed investment company owns the majority of Icon shares, WSJ reports. The FBI is also investigating whether sensitive technology with military applications has been transferred to China, the Journal reports.

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Re: Decoupling from China; Getting in Bed with China
« Reply #28 on: January 24, 2022, 10:52:20 AM »
I don't know how we fight
this

we have millions of Chinese in this country

how could we know which ones are spies and which not?

to try to follow them is a violation of their rights - the ones who are citizens at least


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Rising number of Chinese companies being delisted from US exchanges
« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2022, 12:32:29 PM »
Rising Number of Chinese Companies to Delist From US Exchanges Due to Poor Performance
By Fran Wang January 30, 2022 Updated: January 31, 2022biggersmaller Print

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A rising number of Chinese companies listed on Wall Street are under pressure to be cut off from U.S. capital markets due to poor performance and non-compliance with listing standards.

Beijing-based MMTec, Inc. announced on Jan. 28 that it got notification from Nasdaq’s Listings Qualifications Department as its common stock had been trading below $1 for 30 consecutive business days. The company was granted 180 days to revert to the minimum bid price requirement.

China Finance Online Co. was delisted from Nasdaq on Jan. 21 as it was failing to meet the minimum $2.5 million shareholder equity requirement.

Nasdaq initially notified China Finance of the non-compliance in May 2021, and provided an extra grace period until Jan. 14 to comply.

Now, its shares can only be traded through over-the-counter (OTC), a market devoid of large financial institutions, substantial liquidity, and the ability for sellers to find a buyer fast without losing money.

FangDD Network, an online real estate marketplace, and BEST Inc., a logistics solution provider, are likely to be cut off  from U.S. exchanges after their American depositary shares (ADS) closing prices dropped below $1 for 30 consecutive trading days.

An ADS is the U.S. dollar-denominated equity share of a foreign-based company available for purchase on an American stock exchange.

Currently, over 200 Chinese companies have their shares listed in the United States; around 170 of these shares fell in 2021, with 150 seeing a 40 percent or larger decline, and 40 experiencing an 80 percent plummet, reported investing.com, citing a Chinese analysis article.

For instance, Gaotu TechEdu’s shares were down 96 percent; TAL Education’s shares were down 95 percent; New Oriental was down 89 percent; iQiyi was down 76 percent; Pinduoduo was down 69 percent; and Alibaba was down 51 percent.

FangDD presented its third-quarter unaudited financial results in November, revealing a 58 percent decline in revenue and a $55 million net loss. Its share price has since been cut in half. The latest ADS closed at $0.33 per share.

The Nasdaq Golden Dragon China index—a weighted index of Chinese stocks publicly traded in the United States—fell by 43 percent in 2021, or 60 percent from its February peak. This rolling sell-off was in stark contrast to the Nasdaq Index, which gained 21 percent last year.

Following multiple massive falls in share prices, the market value of many Chinese companies has been wiped out significantly. According to the article, Chinese stocks trading on U.S. exchanges lost over $760 billion in total during 2021, nearly one-third of their market capitalization.

Educational services provider Puxin Limited received a second notice on Jan. 21 from the New York Stock Exchange for non-compliance with the continued listing standards because the average market capitalization was under the $50 million requirement over 30 trading days.

Puxin announced on Jan. 27 that each of its ADS represents 20 ordinary shares, a change that will take effect on Jan. 31.

The change is aimed to boost the company’s ADS price, and bring it into compliance with the NYSE’s trading price requirement, said Puxin’s statement.

Puxin posted the unaudited second-quarter financial statement in late December, citing a net loss of $213 million. Its most recent common stock price was only $0.2 a share.


The Securities and Exchange Commission finalized a rule in early December to implement a law that will allow the market regulator to ban foreign companies listed in the U.S. market from trading if for three consecutive years the companies’ auditors prevent the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board from inspecting completely.

Congress passed the law known as the “Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act” in 2020 to ensure that foreign companies, especially Chinese ones, adhere to U.S. regulations.

Accounting scandals at Chinese companies listed on U.S. exchanges, such as Luckin Coffee Inc., have exposed the risks to investors faced by this oversight loophole.

“A company that uses audit firms based in countries with a weak rule of law, such as China, runs a greater risk of accounting problems,” reported The Wall Street Journal, citing a study co-authored by Jenna Burke, an accounting professor at the University of Colorado Denver.

Beijing doesn’t allow those inspections. The delisting could begin at the start of 2024.

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ET: Florida looking into decoupling
« Reply #31 on: February 03, 2022, 01:20:43 PM »
Florida may soon cut ties with China as the state is currently reviewing its investments in Chinese companies, including those of its retirement system.

U.S. pension holders and retirees unwittingly invest in companies that are tied to the Chinese communist regime and Gov. Ron DeSantis in December took action to stop Floridians’ money flowing into these firms.

DeSantis ordered a review of Florida Retirement System investments to determine how much has been invested in Chinese companies. Florida state’s pension plan is one of the largest public retirement plans in the United States and three-quarters of its total assets are managed by the State Board of Administration (SBA).

Following DeSantis’s order, the SBA has started the audit process, according to the governor’s spokesperson Christina Pushaw.

There’s no clear timeline for the conclusion of the review, “but the legislative session ends March 11, and it’s likely we will have an update to share before that,” Pushaw told The Epoch Times.

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump declared a national emergency to tackle the security threats posed by Chinese companies.

In June last year, Biden signed an executive order, extending a Trump-era ban that prohibits U.S. investors from investing in Chinese military companies. Many of these companies are publicly traded on stock exchanges around the world and are tracked by major indexes such as MSCI and FTSE.

“I think that the U.S. as a whole should be disentangling from China,” DeSantis said at the SBA meeting on Dec. 20. “But, certainly, our investments should be disentangling.”

DeSantis cited the non-transparent nature of Chinese companies and their potential involvement in human rights abuses committed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

“The elites in America for a generation have created this big monster,” DeSantis said.

Florida also revoked the state pension fund’s proxy voting authority that has been given to outside fund managers, like BlackRock. DeSantis accused them of pursuing ideologies inconsistent with the state’s values and its financial interests.

His announcement came after a consumer advocacy group in December sent a letter (pdf) to the governors of the top 10 states with the most pension dollars invested in BlackRock. The asset management giant has come under fire in the last year for its investments in China.

Epoch Times Photo

“We urge elected officials to do their due diligence in educating themselves and their staff on the multiple risks posed by BlackRock’s extensive investments in Chinese companies, both from an ethical standpoint as well as the fiduciary responsibility owed to U.S. pension holders and retirees,” William Hild, executive director of Consumers’ Research wrote in the letter to the 10 governors, including DeSantis.

The 10 states whose public pension funds are most invested in BlackRock are Washington, Florida, New York, Nevada, Nebraska, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Montana, and West Virginia.

Washington state tops the list with $13 billion of state pension funds invested in BlackRock, according to a Consumers’ Research report (pdf), followed by Florida ($10.7 billion) and New York ($9.8 billion).

BlackRock and several big U.S. asset management funds have been criticized for investing in shares of Chinese companies that support the CCP’s military and security apparatuses, and help its human rights abuses.

“BlackRock’s investment choices are not only risking the security of U.S. pensions, but the security of our nation as a whole,” the report states.

According to the report, BlackRock has significant investments in companies that bolster the Chinese military’s technological buildup, including Tencent, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation, China Telecom, and China SpaceSat.

The asset management firm has also invested in two companies, Hikvision and iFlytek, that are blacklisted by the U.S. government for human rights abuses against Uyghurs in the far-western Xinjiang region of China, the report states. Hikvision is one of the world’s largest surveillance equipment manufacturers, and iFlytek is China’s leading artificial intelligence company.


However, BlackRock has pushed back on these criticisms, stating that its obligation is to manage assets consistent with its “clients’ objectives and choices.”

“Stakeholder capitalism is not about politics. It is not a social or ideological agenda,” Larry Fink, chairman and CEO of BlackRock, said in his 2022 letter to CEOs in January.

“It is not ‘woke.’ It is capitalism, driven by mutually beneficial relationships between you and the employees, customers, suppliers, and communities your company relies on to prosper. This is the power of capitalism.”

In January, West Virginia also decided to cut ties with BlackRock over its investments in China and its environmental, social, and governance strategy that harms fossil fuel companies.

State Treasurer Riley Moore said on Jan. 17 in a statement on Twitter that “Any company that thinks Communist China is a better investment than [West Virginia] energy or American capitalism clearly has a bad strategy.”



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WT: 33 Companies added to Unverified list
« Reply #32 on: February 08, 2022, 03:45:41 AM »


Commerce adds 33 Chinese companies to ‘Unverified List’

BY ERIC TUCKER ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Biden administration is raising red flags about 33 Chinese companies whose legitimacy it cannot verify, imposing new restrictions on their ability to receive shipments from U.S. exporters and requiring extra diligence from American companies that want to do business with them.

The Commerce Department said Monday that it was adding the companies to what is known as the “Unverified List,” a roster of businesses worldwide that are subjected to stricter export control because U.S. officials have been unable to do customary checks.

“The ability to verify the legitimacy and reliability of foreign parties receiving U.S. exports through the timely completion of end-use checks is a core principle of our export control system,” Matthew Axelrod, the department’s assistant secretary for export enforcement, said in a statement.

He added that the addition of 33 parties in the People’s Republic of China to the Unverified List “will assist U.S. exporters in conducting due diligence and assessing transaction risk, and signal to the PRC government the importance of their cooperation in scheduling end-use checks.”

The announcement comes as Beijing occupies the world’s attention by hosting the Olympic Winter Games. And it follows a speech last week from FBI Director Christopher A. Wray in which he said the bureau was opening investigations related to Chinese intelligence operations about every 12 hours and warned that there was “no country that presents a broader threat to our ideas, innovation and economic security than China.”

China has repeatedly rejected accusations from the U.S. government, saying Washington has made groundless attacks and malicious smears.

The Commerce Department’s action puts U.S. exporters on notice that they will now need a license if they want to ship products to any of the companies on the list. It alerts the flagged companies that they must certify that they are legitimate and willing to comply with U.S. regulations to continue receiving shipments.

The move is meant to advise China that it must permit U.S. checks and inspections of the companies if it wants them to come off the list.

The Commerce Department conducts checks of some foreign companies, or “end-users,” that receive shipments from inside the U.S. to ensure that the companies exist and are legitimate businesses and that the products are being used for the stated purposes. That’s especially a concern in China, where products seemingly meant for commercial use wind up diverted for military purposes.

The checks are typically coordinated with the Chinese government. When the U.S. is unable to conduct a check, or unable to verify a company’s legitimacy, the company can then be added to the Unverified List. It can come off the list by agreeing to a check and establishing that it is a legitimate business.

Most of the companies flagged Monday are electronics businesses, but they also include optics companies, a turbine blade company, state laboratories at universities and other businesses.

The addition of the 33 Chinese companies brings the total number of listed entities to roughly 175. Other nations with companies on the Unverified List include Russia and the United Arab Emirates.

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ET: Americans need to say NO MORE
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2022, 06:17:57 AM »
Americans Need to Say ‘No More‘ to Products Manufactured in China Using Slave Labor: Official
By Ella Kietlinska and Joshua Philipp February 12, 2022 Updated: February 13, 2022biggersmaller Print
During an interview on EpochTV’s “Crossroads” program, Nadine Maenza, chair of the federal government commission said that in order to effectively prevent big companies from using slave labor in China to manufacture their products, people should be willing to pay more for these goods.

If these companies are unable to continue with slave labor in Xinjiang, China “with using Turkic Muslims and others to produce their products for free, it’s gonna cost more to get a pair of Nikes,” Maenza said.

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These companies need to reset the way they do business in order to become competitive again; otherwise, they will have a harder time competing with other manufacturers, said the chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

“[Then] China wouldn’t have the opportunity they have right now to take advantage of our markets by flooding them with cheap labor because they’ve been produced by slaves,” Maenza pointed out.

“We look back and we blame this other generation for allowing slavery to happen in the United States. And then here we are, allowing it to happen, because we want to save a couple of bucks on a pair of shoes, or on a bag, or on gym clothes.”

“The easiest way to re-shift this would be to have the American people say ‘no more,’ and it would actually benefit financially companies to end their engagement in slave labor.”

If people stopped buying products made with slave labor all companies would want to have that “checkmark, saying that they’re clear of all slave labor on other goods, because they know that means they will make more money,” Maenza said.

“I think most Americans have absolutely no idea that they might have items in their house that were produced by slave labor. And if they did, they’d make different choices in their purchasing.”

Therefore, it is important that news media cover the truth of what’s happening with all eyes on China, the chairwoman continued, adding that she hopes there’ll be more articles, news stories, and more opportunities to call out all of those companies that use slave labor in China.

“We should be supporting companies that do not engage in these types of practices.”

Epoch Times Photo
Uyghur women work in a clothing factory in Hotan county, Xinjiang province, China on Apr. 27, 2019. (Azamat Imanaliev/Shutterstock)
In December, a law went into effect that bars importing to the United States goods produced using forced labor of Uyghurs, or certain ethnic minorities, or members of other persecuted groups in Xinjiang.

“This is a way that we can say to U.S. companies: you can’t use slave labor to produce products to be sold in the United States. That goes against our values, against any sort of standard of human rights.”

This bipartisan bill, also known as the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, makes a rebuttable presumption (a legal assumption with no evidence to the contrary) that every product made in Xinjiang is made using used forced labor, Maenza said.

However, if a manufacturer deals with a company there that does not use forced labor, that company can be certified by the American government and then the goods produced can be sold in the United States, she added.

Maenza said that this legislation was perceived as “a huge threat” by a lot of big corporations including Nike so they fought it.

Epoch Times Photo
A woman walks past a Nike logo inside a shopping mall in Beijing on June 2, 2021. (Nicolas Asfouri/AFP via Getty Images)
Nike denied in a statement that it “lobbied against the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act or any other proposed forced labor legislation.”

“While Nike does not directly source cotton or other raw materials, traceability at the raw materials level is an area of ongoing focus. We are working closely with our suppliers, industry associations, brands, and other stakeholders to pilot traceability approaches and map material sources so we can have confidence the materials in our products are responsibly produced,” the statement said.

The Forced Labor Prevention Act covers just a small portion of abuses taking place in China, Maenza said, and while it “may not stop all force labor products, it is now making it clear that this is what China does” and this fact can no longer be denied.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce actually opposed the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, the chairwoman noted.

Businesses, regardless of whether they are big, small, or medium, are connected in many ways to China, or have some part of their supply chain coming from China, or there are jobs connected to these businesses’ relationship with China, Maenza said.


Therefore, businesses are really reluctant to sever their ties with China, she added.

Maenza and three members of the Commission that she chairs were sanctioned by the communist regime of China in December.

She believes that the sanctions were imposed on them for calling out the state-led oppression of Uyghurs, Tibetans, Christians, Falun Gong, and for condemning the violations of their rights and the crimes against them. The other reason could be that she and other Commissioners have made some pretty tough recommendations to the U.S. government that were followed, Maenza explained.

The Commission has been reporting on religious freedom in China since its inception in 1998 but its calling out the religious freedom violations in China has not garnered much attention that is, until the last 4 or 5 years when these crimes ramped up to a huge proportion, Maenza said.

“It got to the point that the international community couldn’t look away.”

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59 Chinese companies sanctioned by Treasury Dept
« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2022, 03:51:09 AM »
Sanction rules hit 59 Chinese companies linked to military

Treasury aims to cut access to U.S. capital markets

BY BILL GERTZ THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The Treasury Department on Tuesday issued regulations to implement sanctions on 59 Chinese military companies aimed at blocking Beijing from building up its armed forces with cash obtained from U.S. financial markets.

The regulations prohibit all U.S. financial and stock companies and individual investors from engaging in securities trading that in any way financially benefits the named Chinese enterprises or their executives. The companies were designated as military entities earlier by the Pentagon.

The companies include a number of major Chinese aerospace and telecommunications firms, including Huawei Technologies, that have already been targeted by the U.S. government for its suspected links to Chinese intelligence services.

The regulations call for either civil or criminal penalties for anyone who violates sanctions contained in a November 2020 executive order by former President Donald Trump, as well as additional sanctions in an order signed by President Biden in June.

The sanctions target parts of the military industrial complex that are closely aligned with the civilian economy in China, in what Beijing has dubbed a “fusion strategy.” The Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Controls said that even more detailed sanctions controls will be put in place later, the department said in announcing the rules Tuesday.

The Trump administration’s November 2020 order listed 31 Chinese military companies said Beijing is “increasingly exploiting United States capital to resource and to enable the development and modernization of its military, intelligence and other security apparatuses.”

“At the same time, those companies raise capital by selling securities to United States investors that trade on public exchanges both here and abroad, lobbying U.S. index providers and funds to include these securities in market offerings, and engaging in other acts to ensure access to U.S. capital,” the order said. “In that way, the [People’s Republic of China] exploits United States investors to finance the development and modernization of its military.”

Cutting off access to U.S. capital markets seeks to limit China’s ability to bolster military, intelligence and other security agencies that are using the “ostensibly private” economy, the order said.

The Biden order expanded the sanctions to include companies involved in what critics say are human rights abuses by the communist regime, such as the repression of ethnic Uyghurs in Xinjiang. Mr. Biden said in his June 3 order that additional sanctions were needed to curb Chinese use of surveillance technology to facilitate repression or serious human rights abuses.

Roger W. Robinson Jr., a former National Security Council official in the Reagan administration, was one of the first to highlight the dangers posed by allowing China’s defense firms access to American capital markets. Mr. Robinson said the military penetration of U.S. capital markets was carried out quietly since at least 2012.

A sizable number of Chinese corporations with military links were until recently active in the debt and equity portfolios of millions of ordinary American investors, many of whom are unaware of the connections, Mr. Robinson said in a recent interview.

Among them are contractors for the People’s Liberation Army, construction companies that built military bases on disputed islands in the South China Sea, advanced weapons manufacturers, cyber hackers and companies selling military goods to North Korea and Iran.

“The penetration of the U.S. debt and equity markets by Chinese bad actors represents a national security peril, both in terms of serving as an important source of funding for some of China’s most ominous security threats to vital U.S. and allied security interests, and, over time, giving rise to a massive new China lobby of beholden U.S. investors,” Mr. Robinson said.

In March 2018, China Shipbuilding Industry Co., one of the 59 sanctioned companies, announced plans to build the PLA’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier as part of Beijing’s large-scale naval forces buildup. Shortly after the announcement, Mr. Robinson revealed, China Shipbuilding issued a $1 billion bond in the German bond market in Frankfurt timed to completion of the carrier.

The $1 billion bond offering will almost certainly assist in financing construction of a new nuclear carrier, with some of the funds raised coming from U.S. institutional investors, he said.

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WT: Country of Origin labeling needed
« Reply #35 on: February 22, 2022, 03:49:40 AM »
Country-of-origin labeling needed in China legislation

Consumers deserve the chance to buy safe, American-made options

By Michael Stumo

After two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s clear that Americans have experienced a sea change in their views toward China. Polls show that consumers have become more interested in buying American-made products — and 40% of them will no longer buy anything made in China. Particularly striking is the fact that nearly 80% of consumers would be willing to pay more to see production move from China back to the United States.

Clearly, Americans want to buy products stamped “Made in America.” But what about the goods they buy online? When shopping on the internet, consumers may find themselves uncertain of a product’s safety, or whether it’s even made in the U.S. And that’s a problem since unreliable manufacturers — particularly in China — have a long track record of producing shoddy and unsafe goods.

Washington is finally tackling the problem, though. Last year, a Senate committee approved a bill by Sens. Democrat Tammy Baldwin and Republican Rick Scott requiring prominent country-of-origin labeling for any product sold online. Their legislation could help consumers find American-made options when shopping on the internet — and avoid buying goods from countries where unsafe production has been an issue.

The legislation proposed by Ms. Baldwin and Mr. Scott would also mandate a clear disclosure of the country in which the seller of a product is located. The seller’s location matters, too, since counterfeit and knockoff goods have become a rampant problem in mainland China.

Earlier this month, the House passed the America COMPETES Act of 2022 — legislation intended to boost U.S. competitiveness in the face of China’s aggressive trade practices. Helpfully, the bill also includes the country-of-origin labeling originally advanced by Ms. Baldwin and Mr. Scott. Congress is now working to merge the House bill with similar China legislation that passed the Senate last year.

However, China remains a thorny issue in Congress, and a well-financed import lobby is looking to water down the legislation. Last year’s Senate bill already contained several flaws, including language that would limit the application of certain U.S. tariffs. Advocates for U.S. manufacturing remain concerned that parts of the Senate’s flawed bill could make it into the eventual, compromise legislation.

However, legislation requiring country-of-origin labeling for e-commerce should be a no-brainer, especially when questionable online sales are becoming more common. A 2019 investigation found 10,870 items for sale on Amazon that had been declared unsafe by federal agencies, were labeled deceptively, lacked federally-required warnings, or were banned by federal regulators. This included many items that big-box retailers would normally bar from their shelves. And of the 1,934 sellers whose addresses could be determined, 54% were based in China.

This type of unsafe e-commerce is now becoming more widespread. The family of a Missouri man killed in a motorcycle accident sued Amazon for a fraudulently labeled helmet purchased online. And a Georgia man sued Amazon for a hoverboard that caught fire and burned his home. Such problems are increasing, though, and it’s estimated that multiple new product listings are uploaded to Amazon from China every second.

More and more Americans have turned to online shopping in the wake of the COVID-19 lockdown. They need to be certain that the medicines, electronics, toys and household items they buy online are safe. Country-of-origin labeling for e-commerce represents an important step toward reclaiming the safety of internet shopping.

Consumers deserve the chance to buy safe, American-made options. And so, as Congress looks to negotiate a compromise China bill between the House and Senate, lawmakers should make certain to include the country-of-origin labeling provisions introduced by Ms. Baldwin and Mr. Scott.

Michael Stumo is CEO of the Coalition for a Pros-perous America. Follow him at @michael_stumo.


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Biden calls for ramping up domestic mining of REEs
« Reply #37 on: February 23, 2022, 03:07:25 AM »
Biden calls for ramping up domestic mining of rare minerals

President says U.S. tech industries too dependent on China

BY TOM HOWELL JR. THE WASHINGTON TIMES

President Biden on Tuesday outlined plans to ramp up domestic mining, saying U.S. tech industries are too dependent on China for cobalt, lithium and other critical rare earth minerals.

Mr. Biden said the industrial based arm of the Defense Department will award $35 million to MP Materials to separate and process heavy rare earth elements at its facility in Mountain Pass, California — one year after the White House ordered a review of ways to promote homegrown projects to compete with Beijing.

MP Materials, a mining company, is also investing $700 million to create 350 jobs in the sector developing permanent magnets, which are used in electric-vehicle motors, defense systems, electronics and wind turbines.

“To build a truly strong economy we need a future that’s made in America,” Mr. Biden told California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, and other guests in a virtual meeting at the White House. “China has spent several years cornering the market on many of the materials that power technologies we rely on.”

China controls up to 85% of the world’s rare earth oxides and about 90% of rare earth metals alloys, and permanent magnets, according to the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Mr. Biden’s announcement came as U.S. allies in Europe learned a hard lesson this week about depending on adversaries to power their economies.

Germany responded to the Russian invasion of Ukraine by halting the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.

The pipeline would have doubled the flow of Russian gas to Germany and eased soaring energy costs for European customers. The situation is offering a real life example of what happens when a country becomes overly reliant on a rival.

“Welcome to a new world where Europeans will soon pay 2,000 euros for a thousand cubic meters of gas!” tweeted former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who is deputy chairman of the Security Council of Russia.

The Biden administration expects demand for critical minerals, meanwhile, to jump by 400% to 600% and by 6,000% for minerals used in electric vehicles, specifically, over the next several decades.

“China controls most of the global market in these minerals,” Mr. Biden said. “The fact is we can’t build a future that’s made in America if we ourselves are dependent on China.”

China has significant rare earth deposits like the U.S., Canada and others, though Chinese state-owned companies also partner with foreign firms that do the “dirty work” of mining and extraction elsewhere before production and refinement is performed in China, said Chris J. Dolan, a political science and global studies professor at Lebanon Valley College.

China controls 101 of the 136 lithium battery plants and, while it does not have much of its own cobalt, the Chinese own eight of the 14 cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“China knows very well that mining rare earths is tricky business, and also the backbone of advanced technologies,” Mr. Dolan said. “The U.S. sat back and did little to nothing over the course of Republican and Democratic administrations to counterbalance this. Biden is now playing catch-up.”

China’s control of minerals and the Russia-Ukraine crisis underscore the consequences and trade-offs involved in maintaining relations with China and Russia.

“The West is in a race with these two maligned actors who pledged ‘no limits’ to their partnership. If any U.S. ally trades in dual-use technologies based on rare earths with China and/or Russia, then the U.S. cannot tolerate that,” Mr. Dolan said, referring to technology that can be used for both peaceful and military aims.

“NATO members need to make a choice between the U.S. or Russia and China on these issues because rare earths will determine who wins the competition of emerging and disruptive technologies,” he said, citing examples like artificial intelligence, quantum computing, batteries, electric vehicles and hypersonic weapons.

Besides the MP Materials investment, the White House highlighted these projects Tuesday:

• Berkshire Hathaway Energy Renewables (BHE Renewables) said it will break ground this spring on a project in Imperial County, California, to test the commercial viability of their sustainable lithium extraction process. The plan is to produce battery-grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate by 2026.


• Redwood Materials is pushing a pilot program with Ford and Volvo to collect and recycle end-of-life lithium-ion batteries at Nevada-based facilities.


• Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm outlined how a $140 million project funded by bipartisan infrastructure law will recover rare earth elements and critical minerals from coal ash and other mine waste, reducing the need for new mining. Also, she said $3 million in infrastructure funding will be invested in refining battery materials such as lithium, cobalt, nickel and graphite.

Yet the U.S. may have fumbled a chance to secure minerals in Afghanistan last year, even as China looks to cash in.

A 2010 Department of Defense report priced Afghanistan’s untapped mineral wealth — which includes copper, iron, gold and lithium — at roughly $1 trillion. In 2019, an Afghan government official estimated the value as high as $3 trillion.

While the U.S. raced to evacuate citizens and debate recognition of the Taliban government, China opened talks with the Taliban to gain access to the mineral mines.


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Re: Biden calls for ramping up domestic mining of REEs
« Reply #38 on: February 23, 2022, 06:57:59 AM »
That's funny because in northern Minnesota, the Iron Range, Democrats are blocking safe clean mining practices.
 They would rather have these minerals essential to their solar panels and iphones mined in China.  This is a big reason why MN Congressional District flipped from D to R over the last 10 years.

Why do they have to have this painfully slow learning curve, confounded with misinformation and disinformation?


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WSJ: Competitiveness Bill
« Reply #40 on: May 16, 2022, 03:36:21 AM »
China Competitiveness Bill Faces Hurdles as Time Runs Short
More than 100 lawmakers are involved in talks as flashpoints emerge

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo is urging Congress to act soon on legislation aimed at boosting U.S. competitiveness against China.
PHOTO: SAMUEL CORUM/BLOOMBERG NEWS
By John D. McKinnonFollow
 and Yuka HayashiFollow
May 16, 2022 5:30 am ET



WASHINGTON—Disagreements over legislation designed to boost U.S. competitiveness against China are clouding its prospects in Congress, as lawmakers enter a period of make-or-break negotiations.

Many lawmakers say the sprawling, complex package—which even includes a section on kitchen sinks—remains likely to pass this year. But squabbles are emerging over proposed national-security reviews of outbound U.S. foreign investments; waivers of tariffs on Chinese imports; and curbs on the sale of counterfeit goods online, among other provisions.

The flashpoints are worrying those who support the bill’s central goal of boosting U.S. high-tech research and manufacturing to counter advancements by China and other commercial rivals. The legislation would expand federal investment in technologies such as quantum computing and dedicate $52 billion in new subsidies to rebuild semiconductor manufacturing in the U.S., which has been eclipsed by Taiwan and other overseas competitors.

“If they delay too much, America loses out,” said Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo last week, referring to U.S. lawmakers.


A spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy in Washington said of the legislation: “How the U.S. intends to develop and strengthen its competitiveness is its own business, but we are firmly against the U.S. making an issue out of China and perceiving it as an imaginary enemy.”

The November elections are also looming, limiting time for lawmakers to hammer out a compromise between House and Senate versions as political pressures mount.

Some Republicans are urging their colleagues to take their time. “Although I hope to see significant progress soon, we should not rush the conference process to meet arbitrary and politically motivated deadlines,” said Sen. Roger Wicker (R., Miss.), the top Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee.

If the debate goes on too long, Democrats worry that political motivations will ultimately lead Republicans to oppose the package, to deny an election-year victory to their opponents.

“I think both sides will be able to claim victory,” said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D., Md.), who is helping to shepherd the legislation. But “am I worried about it? Yes, I am worried about it.”

Last Thursday, members of the joint House-Senate committee that will negotiate a compromise—which includes more than 100 lawmakers—held their initial meeting to discuss the legislation in a cavernous, column-lined Senate caucus room.



The task of this so-called conference committee: reconcile an initial Senate version of the bill, passed in a bipartisan vote last year, with a Democratic-backed House version that added major policy proposals on trade, climate change, supply-chain security, labor and workforce development, immigration and online commerce.


Some business lobbyists are calling on Congress to strike a narrow deal. “If you zoom out for a second, the real issue is that we have a fairly narrow bill passed on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis in the Senate, and we have an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink bill passed on a partisan basis in the House,” said Neil Bradley, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Legislative proposals in the mix aren’t all directly related to China policy and touch on areas as diverse as banking rules for marijuana merchants and domestic mink ranching (which would be effectively banned by the House bill). The legislation includes kitchen sinks, under the heading “Stainless steel handmade kitchen sinks,” in a section seeking lower tariffs on them.

The House version of the bill also included a provision to establish a government mechanism to review and restrict outbound U.S. investments on national-security grounds, despite opposition from industry—and concerns in both parties—about the measure’s potentially broad scope.


Proposals to address these concerns have emerged in recent weeks, but lawmakers haven’t unified behind any one.

Another controversy has arisen over House proposals that sponsors say aim to curb counterfeit imports that can shortchange U.S. businesses and consumers. The measures have drawn fire from the likes of eBay Inc. which has said it could pit small sellers against big brands.



The bill’s Senate sponsors, Sens. Chris Coons (D., Del.) and Thom Tillis (R., N.C.), said in a joint statement that the bill “provides a balanced approach to address the dangers of counterfeit goods, many of which come from China, that threaten Americans’ health and safety and harm American jobs and intellectual property.” They say the House version of the bill addresses many of the concerns raised, including for small sellers, and they remain open to further changes.

Among the most contentious provisions is a proposed requirement that the U.S. trade representative start a new process to grant tariff waivers, a step that could result in a significant erosion of the scope of goods subject to existing tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese imports.

Critics say the tariffs fall on U.S. businesses that pay duties on imported materials or parts, rather than Chinese exporters they were intended to punish, cutting into their profits and adding to inflation that hurts American consumers.

The debate comes at the same time Biden administration officials and businesses are sharply divided over whether the Trump-era tariffs should be removed as a way to ease inflation.

In Congress, Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) is leading the Senate effort to push for the provision allowing importers to request to waive certain tariffs. “Failure to allow this remedy will harm our own manufacturers, disadvantaging these companies relative to foreign competitors at a time when we should be enabling their success,” Mr. Toomey said last week.

Pushing against Mr. Toomey is the bipartisan pairing of Katherine Tai, the U.S. trade representative, and Robert Lighthizer, Ms. Tai’s predecessor under the Trump administration. The pair, in favor of maintaining the levies as leverage against Beijing in continuing trade talks, have separately asked senators to oppose the exclusion and successfully persuaded some to withdraw their earlier support, according to people familiar with the situation.



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ET: Probe into China subverting solar tariffs divides Dems
« Reply #43 on: May 30, 2022, 02:46:36 AM »

second

Probe into China subverting solar tariffs divides Democrats

BY RAMSEY TOUCHBERRY THE WASHINGTON TIMES

A split has emerged among Democrats over an investigation by the Biden administration into whether China is subverting U.S. tariffs on solar panels that opponents say are crippling the cleanenergyindustry. TheDepartment of Commerce is determining if the foreign adversary is funneling crucial solar panel components through neighboring countries to illegally bypass U.S. taxes, a probe that critics have pressured to end to lift its stranglehold on solar projects across the U.S.

But a new coalition of Democrats who support the investigation has emerged, highlighting a split in the party. They are urging the Biden administration against succumbing to “overwhelming special interest political pressure” and not allowing Beijing to cheat on tariffs that could hurt American manufacturing. “To underscore and reiterate the point: these laws are designed to ensure that American manufacturers and producers can compete on a level playing field, free from unfair trade practices,” Democrats who support the probe wrote in a letter to President Biden Thursday. “It is troubling that corporate lobbying against a simple investigation would reach this level of mass hysteria if there was not some concern over what career civil servants at DOC may uncover.”

Those Democrats included Sens. Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Bob Casey of Pennsylvania; Reps. Marcy Kaptur and Tim Ryan of Ohio; Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania; and Terri Sewell of Alabama. According to the American Clean Power Association, roughly 80% of imported solar panels come from four countries that are alleged to be helping China avoid tariffs: Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

Critics say that the Department of Commerce investigation has thrust the solar industry into peril. It’s caused more than 500 projects — both small and utility-scale — to be delayed or canceled and is jeopardizing tens of thousands of jobs because of halted imports, according to a recent survey of businesses by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

The Democrats who praised the investigation acknowledged that it’s impacting the same clean energy that they have promoted to combat climate change. However, they argued it was necessary to protect long-term American interests andbusinesses. “Thebottom line is that short-term supply disruptions in the solar supply chain are no reason to abandon trade enforcement,” their letter read. “In fact, if trade enforcement is abandoned, these short-term disruptions will almost certainly become long-term issues.”

The Democrats also targeted SEIA, which has been at the forefront of lobbying against the tariff investigation. They suggested the organization has a business interest in ending the probe because SEIA represents several Chinese manufacturers.

In a statement, SEIA President and CEO Abigail Ross Hopper railed against those who praised the investigation and said accusations SEIA was under Chinese influence “are absurd and patently false, and those who suggest otherwise are being fundamentally dishonest.”

“What we are trying to do is put an end to a meritless trade case that is stalling the fight against climate change and frittering away tens of billions of dollars in American clean energy investment,” Ms. Hopper said. “This case has brought the U.S. solar industry to a screeching halt, stopping critical clean energy development and, ironically, cutting off supply for domestic manufacturers.”

Echoing SEIA’s arguments and concerns have been lawmakers from both sides of the aisle.

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo was grilled by senators during a congressional hearing earlier this month. She defended the agency’s role by contending that her hands were essentially tied because current law mandates they investigate. Ms. Raimondo also declined pressure from members of Congress to intervene and expedite the inquiry.

Her testimony did little to assuage the concerns of lawmakers. Democratic opponents have continued their public and vocal campaign against the administration’s inquiry.

Democratic Sens. Jacky Rosen and Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada, Tom Carper of Delaware, Michael Bennet of Colorado and Martin Heinrich of New Mexico earlier this week publicly demanded DOC swiftly “end their job-killing investigation,” as Ms. Rosen put it.

More than a dozen House Democrats also tried to ramp up the pressure by outlining their “grave concern about the devastating economic and environmental impacts” in a letter to Mr. Biden.

The political firestorm that’s erupted has been the result of a small California solar panel manufacturer, Auxin Solar. It triggered the inquiry with a petition earlier this year outlining potential wrongdoingbyChina. The industry and lawmakers have directed their frustration squarely at Auxin, prompting CEO Mamun Rashid to recently hit back at his critics who question how a singular company could bring the entire sector screeching to a halt. Mr. Rashid told The Manufacturing Report, a manufacturing-industry podcast, that the rhetoric from government officials against his company and the probe were “irresponsible” and a “discredit to the offices that they occupy.”

“We have zero fear of competition. I’ll compete all day long with other manufacturers. I welcome other manufacturers to come online in the U.S., so long as it’s a level playing field, we’ll compete all day long,” he said. “And if we lose out, that’s on us. We can compete, that’s all we’re saying, it’s just got to be a level playing field.”



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WT
« Reply #46 on: July 01, 2022, 10:12:42 AM »
U.S. Commerce accuses Chinese companies of aiding Russian military

Adds 23 firms to the two already on the department’s ‘entities list’

BY BILL GERTZ THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The Commerce Department this week sanctioned 23 Chinese companies, including five linked to arms sales to Russia since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

Two other Chinese firms already on the department’s export blacklist also provided military goods to Moscow, the department said in a statement.

In addition to the five Chinese firms, one company in Uzbekistan was identified as supplying military goods to the Russian military since February. It was the first time the U.S. government identified Chinese companies involved in supporting the Russian military.

China has refused to condemn Russia’s invasion and the statecontrolled press says that the U.S. and NATO are to blame for provoking the war. Chinese firms have a mixed record of observing international sanctions placed on Moscow since the fighting began.

“The six entities are subject to severe restrictions on access to U.S. technologies and items for having contracted to continue to supply Russian military end users since February 24, 2022, when the current restrictions were put in place,” the department said in a statement Tuesday.

The Chinese companies were added to the department’s blacklist known as the “entities list” of designated firms that are denied access to U.S. goods and services.

The department also disclosed that two Chinese companies already on the blacklist since 2018 have maintained their support of the Russian military even after the Ukraine-related sanctions took effect. The two firms, China Electronics Technology Group Corporation 13th Research Institute and a subsidiary, Micro Electronic Technology in China, previously were sanctioned for military-related transfers to Russia.

Sanctions on the Russian military were imposed after the Feb. 24 invasion by the United States and 37 other allied nations.

Commerce officials declined to provide specifics of the military goods sent to Russia from China. However, the new sanctions confirm suspicions that Beijing’s announced policy of neutrality toward Russia’s war in Ukraine is far from absolute.

Adm. John Aquilino, commander of the Indo-Pacific Command, said in remarks this week that growing China-Russia military collaboration under a February agreement signed just weeks before the Ukraine campaign began puts the West “in an extremely dangerous time and place in the history of humanity.”

Chinese President Xi Jinping told Russian President Vladimir Putin in a phone call earlier this month that “China stands ready to promote the stable and longterm development of pragmatic bilateral cooperation with Russia,” according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry readout.

Mr. Xi reportedly said during the call that Beijing “stands ready to continue mutual support with Russia on issues concerning core interests and major concerns, such as sovereignty and security, and to deepen strategic coordination between the two countries.”

China also has been supporting the Russian war effort through large-scale purchases of discounted oil as Western buyers draw back. Beijing has overtaken Germany as the largest single buyer of Russian energy resources, Radio Free Europe reported this week.

China and India together purchased an estimated 2.4 million barrels of Russian crude oil per day in May.

Asked about the latest Commerce sanctions, a Chinese Embassy spokesperson denied Chinese companies were backing the Russian military.

“China’s position on the Ukrainian issue is consistent and clear. We have been playing a constructive role in promoting peace talks and have not provided military assistance to the conflicting parties,” the spokesperson said.

In Beijing, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said the sanctions on Chinese companies have “no basis in international law” and he noted that the government has protested the action.

“China and Russia conduct normal economic and trade cooperation on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit,” Mr. Zhao said. “This should not become the target of any intervention or restriction by a third party. In handling its relations with Russia, the U.S. must in no way undermine China’s legitimate rights and interests.”

The five Chinese companies placed on the entities list areConnec Electronic Ltd., King Pai Technology Co., Sinno Electronics Co., Winninc Electronic and World Jetta (H.K.) Logistics Ltd. The Uzbek company was identified as Promcomplektlogistic Private Company.

Additionally, 12 other Chinese companies were sanctioned for supplying or attempting to supply Iran with U.S.-origin electronics for the Iranian military.

Eight additional Chinese companies were blacklisted for covertly attempting to acquire unspecified U.S.-origin goods with military applications.

The addition of the companies to the blacklist is designed to prevent the evasion of sanctions on Russia and increase the economic pressure on Mr. Putin to pull back. Companies on the list must first seek an export license from the Commerce Department. Th


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ET: TX Teacher pension fund begins to decouple
« Reply #48 on: October 15, 2022, 06:50:09 AM »
exas Teachers’ Retirement System Moves to Distance Pensions From Chinese Stocks
By Andrew Thornebrooke October 14, 2022 Updated: October 14, 2022biggersmaller Print

0:00
2:14



1

The largest public retirement system in Texas is moving to remove Chinese companies from the list of stocks it invests in as part of its pension fund for teachers.

The Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) gained approval last month to move forward with a new benchmark that proportionally mixes two emerging markets indexes, including one with China and one without.

The move will cut the $184 billion pension fund’s exposure to Chinese stocks in half.

TRS previously stated that it was pursuing this course of action because the MSCI Emerging Markets Index that it used gave an “outsized weight” to China. As such, it sought to improve the diversification of the benchmark and reduce China’s allocation.

China currently represents 35.4 percent of the weight in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index and accounts for 3 percent of TRS’ total exposure.

The new benchmark will reduce China’s weight in the index to 17.7 percent, thus lowering TRS’ exposure to China to 1.5 percent, according to Bloomberg, which first reported the shift.

The change was approved at a previously unreported meeting in September. There is a six-month transition period to adjust the current portfolio accordingly, intended to reduce negative price impact as Chinese markets face a prolonged downward trend.


Several factors are currently weighing on Chinese markets, including the heavy hand of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader Xi Jinping, whose COVID-19 lockdowns have shuttered previously bustling cities for nearly two years.

Also notable are the U.S. sanctions on CCP officials over the alleged genocide of the Uyghurs in China’s Xinjiang region, and the Biden administration’s unprecedented move to limit the types of semiconductors that can be sold to China—a move that has caused Chinese tech stocks to shrink.

While not directly related to current tensions between China and the United States, the idea to potentially restrict exposure to Chinese markets in public pension funds was floated by the Trump administration in 2019.

TRS’ new benchmark is expected to be fully implemented by the beginning of March next year.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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ET: Chip Ban accelerates US decoupling
« Reply #49 on: October 18, 2022, 08:16:13 AM »
New Chip Ban Accelerates US Decoupling From China: Experts
By Alex Wu October 16, 2022 Updated: October 18, 2022biggersmaller Print


The United States expanded its semiconductor ban on China and issued a China-focused “National Security Strategy” five days before the beginning of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) party congress on Oct. 12.

Experts believe these unprecedented moves will accelerate the United States’ decoupling from China and that the “new Iron Curtain” may have fallen.

Experts believe that the Biden administration is moving to ensure and all-round containment of the CCP. Moreover, the sanctions in the semiconductor field are likely just the beginning. If similar sanctions expand to other fields like finance and biotechnology, the decoupling of the United States and China will truly take effect.

Chip Ban Extended to ‘Talents’

The U.S. Department of Commerce announced (pdf) on Oct. 7 that it imposed new export restrictions on advanced semiconductors and chip-manufacturing equipment to prevent American technology from being used for China’s military development.

The swiping ban also effectively prohibits U.S. persons from supporting the development or production of chips covered by the restrictions. Under this rule, U.S. nationals in Chinese chip-related companies will face a choice between losing U.S. citizenship or quitting jobs in China.

U.S. export controls to China for years have only been on technologies, products, companies, or organizations, and the new ban extends export controls to individual U.S. citizens and green card holders for the first time. It is considered to be the most restrictive ban on China’s semiconductor industry.

According to Radio Free Asia, on the day the ban took effect, hundreds of Chinese-Americans working in semiconductor companies resigned from Yangtze Memory Technologies, Changxin Memory Technologies, Shanghai IC R&D Center Jiading Factory, Hefei Changxin Memory Technologies, and others.

Chiou Jiunn-Rong, an Economics professor at National Central University in Taiwan, told The Epoch Times on Oct. 14: “It’s very likely to form a trend. Previously, capital was leaving China, and the next trend is technology professionals leaving China.”

Chiou said that the indirect effect is that after the chip industry is hobbled, China’s overall economy will be impacted, which will affect other fields, and even people in the field of business and business management will probably also leave China.

The United States also announced the National Security Strategy on Oct. 12, which focuses on the CCP and Russia, calling the latter an “immediate threat” and that the CCP was the only competitor with the intention and ability to reshape the national order.

Doong Sy-Chi, deputy chief executive of a Taiwanese think tank, told The Epoch Times on Oct. 14 that the United States has determined to set the CCP as a strategic competitor in all aspects. The trade competition that used to be focused on enterprises has now become on individuals. The Biden administration has made a larger strategic setting.

Decoupling Accelerated

Tsai Ming-fang, an Economics professor at Tamkang University, told The Epoch Times on Oct. 12 that from the new ban it can be seen that the trend of decoupling between the United States and China is more clear and certain. He predicts that “Taiwan factories will no longer help Chinese manufacturers but will help more brands in democratic countries.”

Shen Rongqin, a professor at York University in Canada, told The Epoch Times that the Biden administration has attached great importance to technological sanctions of China from the very beginning. Republican lawmakers have used the entity list to contain the CCP before. But what Biden has done is more radical and comprehensive than many Republican congressmen have suggested. “Starting from the Trump administration, now Biden has accelerated the trend of decoupling between China and the United States in semiconductor technology,” said Shen.

U.S.-based current affairs commentator Li Linyi told The Epoch Times on Oct. 14 that the Biden administration’s actions this time are much tougher than before.

He said: “These measures are likely to be just the beginning for the U.S. government. If these measures are extended to other fields such as finance, biotechnology, etc., it will really become a headache for the CCP. That is the U.S.-China decoupling is really happening.”

Chiou Jiunn-Rong pointed out that the tension between the United States and China seems to be very high now, but not in the military situation unlike the U.S.-Soviet relationship during the Cold War. The first will be economic wars and technological wars.

Xia Song, Luo Ya, Yi Ru, Li Xinan, and Zhang Yuanzhang contributed to this report.

=============================


Zeihan on this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQ_HeCalYq8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tochLfjWuM4&t=206s