On August 27, 2020, the US Department of Defense (“DoD”) published a second tranche to its list of “Communist Chinese military companies,” pursuant to Section 1237 of the of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999 (the “DoD List”).

The announcement follows the DoD’s June 24, 2020, publication of a letter to Senator Tom Cotton enclosing a list of twenty companies headquartered in the People’s Republic of China (“PRC”) which DoD determined are operating directly or indirectly in the United States and are “Communist Chinese military companies.”

(Click here for Steptoe’s blog post following the June 24, 2020 publication of the DoD letter.)Continue Reading Update: US Department of Defense Publishes Update to List of “Communist Chinese Military Companies”

With continuing high unemployment rates and COVID-driven economic woes, on August 3, President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) that could potentially lead to restrictions on the ability of government contractors and subcontractors to use foreign labor in the performance of government contracts.

Specifically, the EO (1) requires executive agencies to review and assess past

Beginning August 13, 2020, executive agencies will be prohibited from contracting with companies that use “covered telecommunications products or services” (i.e., technologies from certain China-based companies) – even if the use is unrelated to performance of federal contracts.

On July 13, 2020, the FAR Council issued an interim rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)

On June 24, 2020, the US Department of Defense (“DoD”) sent a letter to Senator Tom Cotton enclosing a list of twenty companies headquartered in the People’s Republic of China (“PRC”) which DoD determined are operating directly or indirectly in the United States and are “Communist Chinese military companies.”  Titled “Qualifying Entities Prepared in Response to Section 1237 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999 (PUBLIC LAW 105-261),” the “DoD List” includes some Chinese companies frequently associated with the Chinese military, and others that may not have been previously associated with the Chinese military.

For companies doing business with the US government, the US government may consider the inclusion of any of the listed companies in a government contractor’s supply chain as a “supply chain risk” that must be assessed, particularly in connection with information technology.  DoD contractors are already prohibited by their contracts from acquiring certain items and services from “any Communist Chinese military company.”

While not a sanctions list itself, the DoD List may lead to sanctions actions by the US government, as well as reactions from business partners assessing the risk of further action against the listed companies by the US government, particularly for listed companies that are not currently subject to US sanctions.  Pressure from Congress may continue for the administration to continue to update this list, and to impose restrictions on the companies on this list.Continue Reading US Department of Defense Publishes List of “Communist Chinese Military Companies” Operating Directly or Indirectly in United States Pursuant to Section 1237 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999 (the “Act”)

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced the formation of the Procurement Collusion Strike Force, which will focus on one of the DOJ’s top priorities: protecting public funds from bid rigging and fraud. As DOJ’s Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Criminal Enforcement stated in a speech just before the announcement, it is DOJ’s view that

In Energizer Battery, Inc. v. United States, the US Court of International Trade (CIT) recently addressed “substantial transformation” for purposes of determining country of origin (COO) for US government procurement purposes under the Trade Agreements Act (TAA). This is a case of first impression for the CIT, which has jurisdiction to review Customs and