China passes new law to counter sanctions against its officials

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Image: Pixabay
Image: Pixabay

Beijing : China on Thursday passed a new law to counter foreign sanctions as it aims to develop a defence against the mounting pressure from the US and EU over trade and human rights.

Beijing has blamed America for suppressing the Chinese companies in the country and issued veiled threats of retaliation after President Joe Biden last week expanded a blacklist of companies Americans are barred from investing in. 

Countermeasures in the Chinese law include "refusal to issue visas, denial of entry, deportation... and sealing, seizing, and freezing property of individuals or businesses that adhere to foreign sanctions against Chinese businesses or officials," according to the text published by the National People's Congress standing committee, China's top legislature.

Last week, Joe Biden government released a list of companies that have been blacklisted in America and barred its citizens from making any investment in them.

The list of 59 Chinese firms that are off-limits to American investors from August 2 includes major telecoms such as China Mobile, video surveillance firm Hikvision, China Railway Construction Corp, and China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC).

China's anti-foreign sanctions law also allows the country's courts to punish companies that comply with foreign laws that damage national interests -- putting global firms that follow US sanctions in legal jeopardy.