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ICYMI: Rubio: Biden Admin Must Strictly Enforce the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act
Biden Administration Must Enforce Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL)
June 21, 2022
…Starting on June 21, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will block any company seeking to import goods mined, produced, or manufactured, either in whole or in part, by Uyghurs and other persecuted ethnic groups—unless the company can provide conclusive evidence that no forced labor was used at any point in the international supply chain….
…The implementation of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act [UFLPA], which I led with Sen. Merkley and Reps. McGovern and Smith, will…be the most significant change in America’s relationship with China since 2001, when the communist nation joined the World Trade Organization.
In 2001, America’s elites—politicians, public intellectuals, and businesspeople alike—believed free trade would make China more like the West. But the truth is that capitalism didn’t change the Chinese Communist Party; the communists changed capitalism. Over the decade that followed, our companies began shipping jobs overseas, enabling intellectual property theft, profiting from slave labor, and excusing totalitarianism….
But with the UFLPA, we sent a message to the world that the United States will no longer ignore the most horrific atrocities of the 21st century…. This proclamation is already sending shockwaves through the global economy, but enduring change will only come from its rigorous and thorough enforcement….
If our customs agents enforce the UFLPA strictly, they will protect American consumers from unknowingly sending their hard-earned money to companies that use forced labor. Other countries may even follow America’s ethical leadership in an effort to end state-sponsored slavery.
But we cannot take that outcome for granted. The Biden administration is under immense pressure from nationless corporations and the regime in Beijing to find loopholes and carve-outs that would effectively gut the new law. For example, CBP is under pressure to limit its detention of goods, particularly solar and cotton, to the smallest geographical region or sector possible.
My message to President Biden and his administration is simple: Understand the significance of this moment and strictly implement this law.
Read the rest here.