BMW, Jaguar and VW import banned Xinjiang parts – Senate probe

BMW, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) and Volkswagen (VW) used parts made by a supplier on a list of banned companies allegedly linked to Chinese forced labor, a US congressional report said.

At least 8,000 BMW Mini Coopers were imported into the US with parts from banned Chinese firm Sichuan Jingweda Technology Group (JWT). Staff report by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, External.

“Self-policing by automakers is clearly not working,” the Democratic senator said.

Jaguar Land Rover told the BBC it “takes human rights and forced labor issues seriously and has an active program of human rights protection and anti-slavery action”.

BMW and VW did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Mr Wyden urged US Customs and Border Protection to “step up enforcement and crack down on companies that encourage the shameful use of forced labor in China”.

The report said Jaguar Land Rover imported spare parts, including parts from JWD, after the company was placed on the banned list.

JLR said it is now identifying and destroying any stock worldwide containing these components.

In February, VW said thousands of its vehicles, including Porsches and Bentleys, were being held by authorities because they contained a component that violated US anti-forced labor laws.

VW voluntarily reported the issue to customs officials, the report said.

Congress passed the Uighur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) in 2021.

The law is meant to prevent imports of goods from China’s northwestern Xinjiang region believed to be made in forced labor conditions by members of the Uyghur minority group.

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JWD was added to the UFLPA company list in December 2023, meaning its products are considered to be made with forced labour.

China has been accused of holding more than a million Uyghurs against their will in Xinjiang over the past few years.

Officials have denied all allegations of human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

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