Chinese-Made Raw Cotton Materials Involve Forced Labor, US Warns

Uyghur concentration camp as photographed in 2018. (Archives)




US will block all shipments containing cotton-based products originating in Xinjiang, the Uyghur region in northern China, from the its market.

 

U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Trade issued a Withhold Release Order directing personnel at all U.S. ports of entry to block the products “based on information that reasonably indicates the use of forced labor, including convict labor.”



The targeted products were shipped by the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps — a key paramilitary group in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uyghur region that is involved in forced labor abuses.

The order applies to all cotton goods produced by the XPCC, also known as the “Bingtuan,” and its subordinate and affiliated entities, as well as any products that are made in whole or in part with or derived from that cotton, such as apparel, garments, and textiles, the statement said.


“Made in China” is not just about the country of origin anymore,
but such a label should be a warning to every conscientious customer.

 

Deputy Acting Secretary Ken Cuccinelli stated recently that “Made in China” is not just about the country of origin anymore, but such a label should be a warning to every conscientious customer.

Secretary wants businesses and consumers would take extra care in doing business with China to ensure that they're not supporting more human rights violations in the Xinjiang region, Executive Director for Trade Remedy Law Enforcement Ana Hinojosa.

A report by Washington-based think tank the Centre for Global Policy published this week revealed that in 2018, three majority-Uighur regions within Xinjiang sent at least 570,000 people to pick cotton. According to the online Chinese government documents, it was a part of a state-run coercive labour transfer scheme.


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