BIS Targets Alleged Human Rights Violations By Expanding Entity List With Addition Of 28 Chinese Parties

Author:Hogan Lovells
Profession:Hogan Lovells

On 7 October 2019 the U.S. Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) expanded the Entity List, restricting certain transactions with 28 Chinese entities. These 28 Chinese entities include government agencies in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR), as well as a number of companies involved in artificial intelligence research and surveillance technology. The designations and restrictions explained below took effect on 9 October 2019.

Both U.S. and non-U.S. companies doing business with these entities, as well as universities or other organizations engaged in research and development activities, need to carefully consider the impact of these designations on any ongoing activities with these entities.

BIS designated the Chinese parties after determining that a number of the entities have been "implicated in human rights violations and abuses in the implementation of China's campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other members of Muslim minority groups in the XUAR." The full list of entities with their Chinese names is set forth below. Notably, this action is an example of BIS using the Entity List to expressly target entities for engaging in human rights abuses.

On 8 October the State Department also announced that, in conjunction with BIS'designation of these entities, it was imposing visa restrictions "on Chinese government and Communist Party officials who are believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, the detention or abuse of Uighurs, Kazakhs, or other members of Muslim minority groups in Xinjiang, China," as well as family members of such officials. This action complements the State Department's recent issuance of guidance regarding the export of hardware, software, and technology with surveillance capabilities.

Export restrictions

For the 28 entities, BIS is imposing a license requirement for all items subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and a license review policy of case-by-case review for items controlled under Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCNs) 1A004.c, 1A004.d, 1A995, 1A999.a, 1D003, 2A983, 2D983, and 2E983.

In addition, a policy of case-by-case review also applies to items designated as EAR99 that are described in the Note to ECCN 1A995, which includes items for protection against chemical or biological agents that are consumer goods, packaged for retail sale or personal use, or medical...

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