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China: Sanctions

Question for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

UIN HL4884, tabled on 13 December 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to ban investment in the Chinese surveillance company SenseTime, and (2) to respond to the call by the government of the USA for such sanctions to be part of a broad effort to unite democracies against authoritarian states.

Answered on

23 December 2021

The Government is committed to upholding human rights, and has serious concerns regarding the Chinese State's use of technologies in ways that violate human rights. On 12 January, the Government announced a series of measures to help ensure that UK organisations are not complicit in the human rights violations occurring in Xinjiang. These measures included strengthening the Overseas Business Risk guidance on China, which advises UK businesses engaging in joint-research and development activities in the fields of surveillance, biometrics, or tracking technology that they are at heightened risk of facilitating human rights violations due to evidence that invasive surveillance is being used in Xinjiang. It also urges business to consider the risk of exposure to entities that are providing or developing surveillance technologies. The Government continues to work closely with international partners, including the US, to increase pressure on the Chinese authorities to end serious human rights violations in Xinjiang. Most recently, the Foreign Secretary discussed the situation in that region with fellow G7 Foreign and Development Ministers on 11 December.