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Commerce Department adds dozens of Chinese companies to blacklist, cites national security concerns

Wilbur Ross announced the additional firms on Thursday

Updated: December 18, 2020 - 1:52pm

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Secretary of Commerce Wilber Ross says the U.S. will blacklist several dozen Chinese companies over national security concerns.

Ross said Thursday during an interview on Fox Business that about 80 firms, most of which are Chinese, will be placed on a list and denied access to U.S. technology.

"What this is all about is these are companies that are tied to the People’s Liberation Army," he said. "This has to do with their access to very advanced semiconductor products."

Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. or SMIC, which is China's largest chip manufacturer will be blacklisted, as will such supply firms as Broadcomm and Qualcomm. 

The blacklisting will "ensure that China, through its national champion SMIC, is not able to leverage U.S. technologies to enable indigenous advanced technology levels to support its destabilizing military activities,” Ross told The Wall Street Journal.

In November, the Defense Department added SMIC to a list of companies allegedly linked to the Chinese military, effectively barring U.S. investors and companies from buying shares of SMIC beginning in late 2021. SMIC has denied the allegations. 

Trump administration officials have frequently added companies to the entity list, which now includes around 300 Chinese companies and their affiliates and subsidies. Earlier this year, telecomm giant Huawei was added to the list. 

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