US warns companies about the risks of doing business in Hong Kong as China clamps down on tariffs
The national flags of the United States and China waving outside a building.
Teh Eng Koon | AFP via Getty Images
WASHINGTON – The Biden administration on Friday warned companies with operations in Hong Kong of considerable financial and regulatory risks as China continues to restrict political and economic freedoms in the territory.
The nine pages Hong Kong Business Consulting – released jointly by the Departments of State, Treasury, Commerce and Homeland Security – warns that US businesses face a number of risks posed by China’s National Security Law in Hong Kong.
The opinion says that “businesses face risks associated with warrantless electronic surveillance and handing over data to authorities” as well as “restricted access to information.”
“Beijing has undermined Hong Kong’s reputation for accountable and transparent governance and respect for individual freedoms, and has broken its promise to leave Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy unchanged for 50 years,” the secretary wrote. State Antony Blinken in a statement.
“In the face of Beijing’s decisions over the past year that have stifled the democratic aspirations of the people of Hong Kong, we are taking action. Today, we are sending a clear message that the United States stands firmly in solidarity with Hong Kong people.” , added the country’s top diplomat. .
The Biden administration also imposed US sanctions on seven Chinese officials for violating Hong Kong autonomy.
The Chinese Embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Earlier in the week, the Biden administration issued a warning to companies with investment ties to China’s Xinjiang province, citing growing evidence of genocide and other human rights violations in the northern region. -west of the country.
Washington has openly criticized Beijing’s sweeping national security law passed in June 2020 aimed at limiting Hong Kong’s autonomy and banning literature critical of the Chinese Communist Party.
Then Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the measure “Orwellian movement“and an attack” on the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong “.
Former President Donald Trump soon after signed a law imposing sanctions on China in response to its interference in Hong Kong’s autonomy. He also signed a decree ending the preferential treatment that Hong Kong has long enjoyed.
“Hong Kong will now be treated the same as mainland China,” Trump said during a July 2020 speech by the White House Rose Garden.
“No special privileges, no special economic treatment and no export of sensitive technologies,” Trump said. “On top of that, as you know, we are imposing massive tariffs and have imposed very high tariffs on China.”
China’s Foreign Ministry responded by saying Beijing would impose retaliatory sanctions against American individuals and entities.