U.S suspects Chinese companies of providing Russia with war equipment
On Friday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said her government had seen evidence that Chinese firms are aiding Russia’s war effort despite Western sanctions. She urged China to crack down on the flow of equipment to Russia.
“We do not seek to decouple our economy from China’s,” Yellen told reporters after her two-day meeting with Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng.
Although President Joe Biden’s administration would not shy away from unilateral action against Chinese firms that supply Moscow with defense equipment, Yellen said Washington did not want to decouple the U.S. and Chinese economies.
“I stressed that companies must not provide material support to Russia’s defense industrial sector and that they will face significant consequences if they do,” Yellen said at the San Francisco press conference.
Would face “significant consequences.”
According to Yellen, Treasury has seen evidence that Chinese firms and banks are “facilitating” the flow of equipment to Moscow, and they will face “significant consequences”.
“This would be damaging to both the U.S. and China and destabilizing to the world.”
Several private companies, including some in China, and some financial institutions that may be involved in helping Russia obtain equipment have already been sanctioned by the U.S. government, she said.
“We are concerned that despite sanctions programs that we’ve put in place, that equipment that is critical to Russia’s military effort is nevertheless evading sanctions and being delivered to Russia,” she said.
“We are determined to do all that we can to stem this flow of material that aids Russia in conducting this brutal and illegal war,” said Yellen, warning companies that aid Moscow could be sanctioned.
She did not mention the names of the companies involved. “We would like to see China crack down on this, especially when we’re able to provide information,” she said
In addition, Yellen said she had accepted He’s invitation to return to China next year as part of their “regular cadence of contact.”
According to Yellen, these were private Chinese firms, and she did not suggest that the Chinese government knew about them.
More to read: Biden and Jinping are set to meet next week
It happened just days before Biden’s meeting with Chinese Premier Xi Jinping, who will arrive in San Francisco next week for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.
Despite Biden’s efforts to restore U.S. manufacturing and throttle Chinese tech companies, relations remain strained.