China to establish 'unreliable entity list' of foreign companies

China to establish 'unreliable entity list' of foreign companies
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China is set to establish an “unreliable entity list” of foreign companies and individuals that “seriously damage” Chinese enterprises, a spokesperson for China’s Commerce Ministry announced Friday.

The move is seen as retaliation against efforts by the Trump administration to block Chinese telecom company Huawei from doing business in the U.S.

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“Foreign enterprises, organizations or individuals that fail to comply with market rules, deviate from the spirit of the contract, and impost a blockade or confiscation of Chinese enterprises for non-commercial purposes, which seriously damage the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese enterprises, will be included in the list of ‘unreliable entities,'" the spokesperson said, adding that “specific measures will be announced in the near future.”

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to 'forever wars' Lawmakers dismiss Chinese retaliatory threat to US tech MORE signed an executive order earlier this month that allows his administration to block foreign tech companies from doing business in the U.S. if they are deemed a national security threat.

Shortly after, the U.S. Department of Commerce added Huawei to its “entity list,” effectively banning the company from buying components from American companies without government approval.

The spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Commerce stressed that its list is being created because of an increase in “unilateralism and trade protectionism,” in what appeared to be a reference to the United States.

The spokesperson added that the list is meant to “safeguard economic and trade rules and multilateral trading system, oppose unilateralism and trade protectionism, and safeguard China’s national security, social public interests and legitimate rights and interests of enterprises.”

The announcement was made the same day China warned Canada of potential “consequences” if it decided to ally with the U.S. against China in the ongoing trade war, and also as Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial GOP senator blocks bill aimed at preventing Russia election meddling Russian diplomat says election meddling wasn't discussed at White House, contradicting Trump MORE warned Germany not to use 5G networks rolled out by Huawei.