After asking its suppliers, not to source items or labor from the north-western region of Xinjiang, Intel jobs (INTC.O) is facing a reaction from China.
Intel said it had been “required to ensure that its supply chain does not use any labor or source goods or services from the Xinjiang region” following restrictions imposed by “multiple governments”.
The US has accused China of severe human rights violations, including forced labor, in the mostly Muslim region where there is an opportunity for translation of English to Urdu in Xinjiang. The assertions have been frequently refuted by Beijing.
Intel’s comment was labeled “absurd” by the Global Times, a nationalist tabloid published by the ruling Communist Party’s People’s Daily stable of newspapers, which added that the business was “biting the hand that feeds it” by saying it was “biting the hand that feeds it.”
“What we need to do is to make it increasingly expensive for companies to offend China so their losses outweigh their gains,” the newspaper said in an editorial.
Netizens were equally enraged by Intel’s letter. Singer Karry Wang said on China’s Twitter-like Weibo microblog service that he would no longer be an Intel brand ambassador, saying in a statement that “national interests above everything.”
Many Weibo users also urged Chinese nationals to boycott Intel, with one user, “Old Catalan,” writing, “Must resist, do not buy Multinational corporations have been put under strain as they try to comply with Xinjiang-related trade prohibitions while still operating in China, one of their most important markets. The Global Times said in its editorial that multinationals “should be able to endure, properly handle and balance pressure from all parties“. Intel could not immediately be reached for comment.