July 31, 2020

OFAC issues designations and new general license to deter human rights abuses in China

On July 31, 2020, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control announced the designation of Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, a paramilitary organization that is subordinate to the Chinese Communist Party, along with two current or former government officials for their connection with human rights abuses in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.  Specifically, these individuals and entity are connected to the mass detention and serious physical abuse of the Uyghurs, an indigenous Turkic Muslim population in Xinjiang, as well as other ethnic minorities in the region.  The designations are made pursuant to Executive Order 13818, “Blocking the Property of Persons involved in Serious Human Rights Abuse and Corruption,” that implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.  

Xinjiang Production has been designated for acting on behalf of Chen Quanguo, an official who was designated on July 9, 2020, under Executive Order 13818.  Chen is the current First Political Commissar of Xinjiang Production, who exercises control over the organization and is responsible for the implementation of a surveillance and detention program in the Uyghur Autonomous region that targets ethnic minority groups.  The two officials are being designated for acting on behalf of Xinjiang Production. 

As a result of these designations, all US property belonging to these individuals and entities is blocked, and all transactions in the US are generally prohibited. 

Concurrent with the designations, OFAC also issued General License No. 2, “Authorizing Certain Wind Down and Divestment Transactions and Activities Related to Blocked Subsidiaries of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC)”, to allow all transactions that are necessary to wind down business with XPCC or any entity that XPCC directly or indirectly owns a fifty percent or greater interest, until September 30, 2020.  This includes any transaction that is necessary to divest or transfer debt, or equity in any Blocked XPCC Subsidiary to a non-US person, or the facilitation of transactions between non-US persons.

Department of the Treasury Press Release | General License No. 2