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20 Dec 2021


United Kingdom: Trade minister hints at banning Chinese imports with forced labour links

"UK hints at banning Chinese imports with forced labour links", 20 December 2021

The U.K. could follow Washington and ban goods imported from the Chinese region of Xinjiang that were made with forced labour, according to a senior British minister.

The suggestion came as a string of China-skeptic Conservative MPs lined up to urge the U.K. government to follow suit in a bid to pile pressure on the Asian giant over its treatment of the region's Uyghur Muslim minority. [...]

Britain last year announced fines for large firms that fail to show their products aren’t linked to forced labour. But critics dismissed the move as a bureaucratic exercise lacking teeth. 

Trade Minister Penny Mordaunt hinted that the U.K. could go further in the wake of the U.S. move. “We keep these things under review all the time,” she told POLITICO. “I think there are some new moves afoot in that space, and it’s something I know that [the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office] are looking very, very carefully at.” [...]

Part of the following timelines

China: 83 major brands implicated in report on forced labour of ethnic minorities from Xinjiang assigned to factories across provinces; Includes company responses

China: Mounting concerns over forced labour in Xinjiang

Brands face boycott in China over decision not to source Xinjiang cotton due to allegations of forced labour