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US trade bullying not conducive to talks

By LI YANG | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2023-03-27 07:17

Birds fly near the US Capitol at sunrise, on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, in this Feb 8, 2022 file photo. [Photo/Agencies]

The Bureau of Industry and Security of the US Commerce Department is adding another 32 persons and entities to the Unverified List, according to a release issued on Friday, 14 of them are Chinese.

The BIS regulations indicate that these foreign persons are added to the UVL because the BIS or federal officials acting on the BIS' behalf were unable to verify their bona fides (for example, legitimacy and reliability relating to the end use and end user of items subject to the Export Administration Regulations through the completion of an end-use check). Sometimes these checks, such as a pre-license check or a post-shipment verification, cannot be completed satisfactorily for reasons outside the US government's control. Entities under the UVL are only one step away from being added to the BIS' Entity List, and failure to complete end-use verification of products within 60 days of being added to the UVL will result in more severe penalties.

It should be noted US Trade Representative Katherine Tai said on the same day that she is open to trade conversions with Chinese officials. But the BIS' move targeting China apparently does not contribute to the formation of a positive atmosphere for that conversation, and also indicates what a distorted view the US has developed toward "competition" with China that it acts accordingly.

It is no coincidence that most of the hundreds of entities the US has groundlessly blacklisted from other countries, mostly from China, are leading players in their respective fields related to infrastructure, semiconductors and clean energy.

These are exactly the sectors Tai urged the US legislature to give the green light to even more government subsidies to allow the US to compete from "a position of strength" in her testimony before the US Senate Finance Committee on Thursday. Even though the US' subsidies to its green industries have already reached such a level that even its allies feel they are being driven into a corner. They feel obliged to provide subsidies of a similar level to their own industries to prevent them from being sucked to the US.

These US moves in effect have raised the threshold for the less-developed countries to compete in these sectors where they have huge development potential. These practices are in essence trade bullying behavior that is reshuffling the global supply chain in its favor.

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