US says it could act against China firms, banks over Russian war support

By Thomson Reuters May 31, 2024 | 1:41 PM

WASHINGTON, Virginia (Reuters) – The United States and other nations could take steps against Chinese firms and financial institutions over Beijing’s backing for the Russian war against Ukraine, a top U.S. official said on Friday.

The Biden administration has stepped up warnings about China’s backing for Moscow and issued an executive order in December that threatened punitive measures against financial institutions helping Russia skirt Western sanctions.

“I think where we are primarily focused are on Chinese companies that have been involved in a systematic way in supporting Russia,” U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Kurt Campbell told reporters after a meeting near the Virginia town of Washington

“We’ve also looked closely at financial institutions.”

Earlier this week Campbell said there was an urgent need for European and NATO countries to send a collective message of concern to China.

“There will be steps that are taken, not just by the United States, but other countries, signaling our profound displeasure about what China is seeking to do in its relationship with Russia on the battlefield in Ukraine,” he said on Friday.

Campbell spoke after a meeting with senior officials from Japan and South Korea to prepare the way for a trilateral leaders’ summit later this year.

(Reporting by David Brunnstrom, writing by David Ljunggren; Editing by Doina Chiacu and Chizu Nomiyama)