How foreign money is still fuelling abuses in Xinjiang

Financial Times 08.01.2022 1 min read
China watchtower Uyghur prison

Xinjiang sanctions aren’t stopping human rights abuses, report says

Perhaps no place on earth presents such a dilemma for ESG investors as the Chinese province of Xinjiang. It’s the scene of some of the world’s most serious and systematic human rights abuses — home to the mass imprisonment and “re-education” of Uyghur Muslims and other minorities. But it’s also, thanks in part to widespread forced labour, a massive supplier of materials for solar panels — giving it a central role in a sector crucial to fighting climate change.

Unfortunately, according to a new research report from the UK’s University of Nottingham, the main effect of current sanctions is to push up costs for western customers, while the exporting companies have little trouble finding buyers for their products in China and other Asian markets. Restricting capital flows into Xinjiang-linked companies could have much more impact than clamping down on exports.

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