The US expands investment bans on Chinese companies

June 4, 2021 7:52 am

The US President Joe Biden on Thursday signed an executive order, barring American investors from financial interests in 59 Chinese companies.

Details: A new executive order released Thursday broadens prohibitions that Donald Trump’s administration enacted and moves authority for the ban to the Treasury Department from the Defense Department, to give it stronger legal grounding, The Washington Post reported, citing senior administration officials.

“This EO allows the United States to prohibit – in a targeted and scoped manner – US investments in Chinese companies that undermine the security or democratic values of the United States and our allies,” the White House said in a press release.

Among the 59 companies barred are Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC), Huawei Technologies, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology, Aero Engine Corp. of China, Aerosun Corp., and Fujian Torch Electron Technology.

The new order, which will take effect on August 2, allows current investors in these companies to divest their holdings over a one-year period.

Context: The move signals that Biden Administration is continuing its predecessor’s tough approach toward China.

Last November, former President Donald Trump issued an executive order prohibiting US companies from investing in 48 Chinese companies which are allegedly owned or controlled by the Chinese military.