SNAPSHOTS

Biden’s First Hong Kong Sanctions Maintains Trump’s Approach

MIN READMar 17, 2021 | 20:46 GMT

A picture of the Hong Kong skyline taken in June 2019.

(ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP via Getty Images)

Despite China’s ongoing efforts to undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy, new U.S. sanctions indicate that Washington will continue to avoid broader measures against the city’s financial sector or access to U.S. dollars for fear of dramatically escalating tensions with China and damaging U.S. economic interests in Hong Kong. Financial institutions in the city, however, will find themselves increasingly at risk of facing secondary sanctions. On March 16, the U.S. State Department updated its sanctions list under the Hong Kong Autonomy Act, adding 24 individuals involved in either the drafting or enforcement of the city’s controversial national security law. But even after China’s recent passing of sweeping Hong Kong electoral reforms, the latest U.S. sanctions linked to mainland encroachment on the city remain carefully calibrated to a limited set of individuals. ...

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