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As U.S.-China hostilities increase and the relationship between the two countries continues to deteriorate, U.S. companies in China may soon take a big hit as Beijing prepares to release its long-threatened “unreliable entity list”—a move that would subject named companies to investigations, market restrictions and even civil, administrative and criminal liability.

While China first mentioned the possibility of such a list more than a year ago, The Global Times, which is published by the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of China’s ruling Communist Party, reported last month that China is now ready to put U.S. companies on an “unreliable entity list.”

The Chinese list is largely seen as retaliation for the United States expanding its own “Entity List.” Beijing first announced it would establish such a list in May of 2019 in response to Huawei being placed on the U.S. Entity List, which effectively barred U.S. companies from doing business with the Chinese company. The announcement at the time raised considerable alarm among foreign companies in China, worried about survival in the world’s second-biggest economy. But more than one year later, the list remains unpublished.

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Vincent Chow

Vincent Chow is a reporter for Law.com International and China Law & Practice, based in Hong Kong. He writes about lawyers and legal issues in Hong Kong and China and covers the business of law, global and domestic law firms, in-house legal departments and regulatory issues. He can be reached at [email protected]

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