US blacklists foreign entities from Pak, China and Russia over national security issue

The US on Wednesday, Nov. 24 blacklisted twenty-seven foreign entities and individuals including from China and Pakistan, adding them to the Military End-User (MEU) list for engaging in activities that are a threat to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States. Sixteen entities and individuals operating in China and Pakistan were blacklisted “based on their contributions to Pakistan’s unsafeguarded nuclear activities or ballistic missile program.” It is to mention that one entity based in Russia was also banned. 

The US highlighted the threat posed by the military-industrial complex of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and banned at least 8 trade entities referencing to their efforts in developing the Chinese military’s quantum computing that can decode the US government’s communications and make the US military’s jets and submarines vulnerable to attacks. 

The Commerce Department barred the US firms from exporting quantum computing technology to the Chinese to avert the decryption of sensitive information. Quantum computing technology can crack conventional encryption and the US has been leading a program to develop post-quantum cryptography to safeguard the sensitive communications from being intercepted. 

“Global trade and commerce should support peace, prosperity, and good-paying jobs, not national security risks,” US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said in a statement released by US commerce department on Nov. 24. 

“Today’s actions will help prevent the diversion of US technologies to the PRC’s and Russia’s military advancement and activities of non-proliferation concern like Pakistan’s unsafeguarded nuclear activities or ballistic missile program,” she continued. 

Furthermore, Raimondo stressed that US Department of Commerce “is committed to effectively using export controls to protect our national security.”

Attempt to acquire US origin items that support military application 

Quantum computing military risks involving “counter-stealth and counter-submarine applications,” the department noted, as it announced a ban on Japan, Pakistan, Singapore, China and Russia entities. Such emerging quantum military computing technology that supports applications for armed forces such as counter-stealth and counter-submarine applications, and the ability to break encryption or develop unbreakable encryption pose grave threat on the security, the US Department of Commerce warned.

“PRC-based technology entities support the military modernization of the People’s Liberation Army and attempt to acquire US origin-items in support of military applications,” it asserted.

The US ban will restrict exports to PRC producers of electronics that support the People’s Liberation Army’s military modernization efforts. An affiliate of Conrad Technology Limited, a Chinese entity added to the Entity List in 2019, was banned as it has been allegedly involved in sales of technology from the US and other Western nations to Iran’s military and space programs, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and China’s PRC government and defense industry. US’ BIS also added Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology to the MEU list. The move will now make it impossible for US companies to sell technologies to the listed companies in China, Pakistan, Russia majorly among other countries. 

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