The Chinese government may be about to take the first step toward retaliating against the United States over its blacklisting of Chinese firms. According to China’s Ministry of Commerce, an “unreliable entities list” of foreign companies and people is being compiled. Gao Feng, the Commerce Ministry’s spokesman, said in the statement that the list would be aimed at those who block supplies and “take other discriminatory measures.”
An official statement from the ministry says that the list would identify foreign companies, individuals, and organizations that “do not follow market rules, violate the spirit of contracts, blockade and stop supplying Chinese companies for noncommercial reasons, and seriously damage the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies.” Details of which companies or entities would be included on the list have not been disclosed. Feng said that “necessary measures will be taken” against those on the list and that specifics would be released soon.
The move comes after the U.S. government took action against some Chinese companies by placing them on what it calls an “entity list” of firms that need special permission to buy American components and technology. Two weeks ago, Huawei, the Chinese maker of telecommunications gear, was placed on the entity list. According to sources familiar with the matter, Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co. and Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co. may be the next to be added to the list.
A trade war between the U.S. and China continues to smolder. Negotiations have stalled in recent weeks as both sides have accused the other of unfair dealings. U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet again at the G-20 summit at the end of June, but few are expecting any headway to be made in the negotiations by then. Many American companies are already reconsidering their dependence on the Chinese market and Chinese suppliers.