China Imposes Sanctions on Taiwan Amid Pelosi’s Visit

China suspended the trade of some export and import items with Taiwan on Wednesday, amid U.S. House Speaker Pelosi’s visit to the island, despite condemnation from Beijing. Export of natural sand from China to Taiwan and imports of fruit and fish products from Taiwan to China are halted by Beijing. China had also suspended imports from 35 Taiwanese exporters of biscuits and pastries since Monday as a warning ahead of Pelosi’s visit.

In the first half of 2022, Taiwan’s exports to China reached $122.5 billion, up 7.3% from a year earlier. Top export items include integrated circuits and electronic components.

China’s commerce ministry said the exports of natural sand, which is used for construction and in concrete, to Taiwan were suspended from Wednesday.

China banned exports of natural sand to Taiwan in 2007, which lasted for a year, due to environmental concerns. More than 90% of Taiwan’s imports of natural sand came from China that year.

China also halted imports of citrus fruit, chilled white striped hairtail and frozen horse mackerel from Taiwan from Wednesday. Beijing based the suspension on its founding of pesticide on citrus fruit, while it claimed traces of the coronavirus were detected on the packaging of some frozen fish products in June.

China’s top food and agricultural imports from Taiwan include seafood, coffee, dairy products, beverages and vinegar.

In the first half of 2022, China’s biggest agricultural and food import goods from Taiwan were fish and other aquatic invertebrates, reaching 399 million yuan ($59 million).

China had also banned imports of grouper fish from Taiwan earlier this year, saying it found banned chemicals. Last year, Beijing also suspended pineapple, sugar apple and wax apple imports from the island, citing pest concerns

Beijing also said it would take “disciplinary actions” against two Taiwan foundations, Taiwan Foundation for Democracy and Taiwan Foreign Ministry’s International Cooperation and Development Fund, which it claimed had engaged in pro-independence separatist activities.

The two foundations will be banned from cooperating with any organizations, companies and individuals in mainland China. Beijing also vowed to punish any mainland organizations, companies or individuals that provide financial aid to or serve the two foundations. It added that other measures could be adopted if necessary.

Related to that decision, any deal or cooperation between four specific Taiwanese firms and mainland companies are not allowed due to their donations to the two foundations.

Executives at the four Taiwanese companies – solar producer Speedtech Energy Co., Hyweb Technology Co., medical equipment producer Skyla, and cold chain vehicle fleet management company SkyEyes – will be prohibited from entering mainland China.

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