New Bill Could Ban Some Chinese Firms from US Capital Markets

The bill would reportedly seek to ban Chinese companies that engage in spying or human rights abuse, or support China’s military or industrial policy. 

A US senator is preparing a bill to ban Chinese companies from US capital markets if they engage in spying, human rights abuse or support China’s military, Reuters reports.

The new legislation would follow soon after the US Department of Defense released a list of 20 companies that are allegedly owned or controlled by the Chinese military. Among the entities named on the list are Huawei, China Railway Construction Corp and China Telecommunications Corp.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio said he plans to unveil the new legislation in the coming weeks, citing China’s “exploitation of US capital markets” as a clear and ongoing risk to US economic and national security.

The bill will also target companies that support Chinese industrial policy.

Senator Rubio, the acting chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, also spearheaded recent legislation that allows for sanctions to be imposed against Chinese officials responsible for human rights violations against Muslim minority groups in Xinjiang, China.

Chinese firms listed in the US have been under increasing scrutiny since April revelations that employees at (now-delisted) Luckin Coffee fabricated about CNY 2.2 billion (USD 310 million) worth of sales transactions.

Nasdaq responded with a proposal to tighten its IPO rules and by delisting Luckin Coffee.

Meanwhile the US President has blocked plans by federal pension fund administrators to track an index that includes Chinese companies, and also instructed a presidential working group to examine the practices of Chinese companies listed on US exchanges.

Separately, work is underway on a bill that would force-delist Chinese companies that could not submit to an audit that can be reviewed by the US audit oversight body, the PCAOB (Public Company Accounting Oversight Board).

 

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