GOP lawmakers claimed that Ford Motor Company intends to use technology and software from at least four Chinese companies that provide the same tools to the Chinese military for a Michigan battery plant.
“As part of their ongoing investigation into Ford Motor Company’s partnership with China-based EV battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited (CATL) to build a Michigan factory, Chairman Mike Gallagher (R-WI) of the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party and Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) of the House Energy and Commerce Committee uncovered evidence that Ford plans to use technology and software from at least four Chinese companies that supply the same types of IT tools to the Chinese military, North Korean government, and China’s Ministry of Public Security,” the Select Committee on the CCP wrote in a press release.
“In letters sent to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, the lawmakers requested that the Biden administration immediately blacklist these four companies that Ford plans to use in its new factory with Chinese battery maker CATL,” it added.
“It is indefensible for Ford to use the same cloud integration and data provider that is linked to North Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs sanctions evasion activity,” Rep. Gallagher and Rep. McMorris Rodgers said in a joint statement.
“Before the Ford plant even comes online, its entire security system could be compromised by this software…The same company that is actively supporting the PRC’s surveillance state will have the capability to embed backdoors, spyware, and other forms of malware within Ford’s iPaaS infrastructure, compromising the confidentiality and integrity of Ford’s sensitive information and posing risk to American’s data privacy rights,” they added.
CCP Battery plants built with @Ford and #Michigan taxpayer dollars connected to NORTH KOREA- @GovWhitmer has been leading the push for these plants! Now lawmakers in Washington want answers!https://t.co/OxOjFOU5gX via @YahooFinance
— Steve Gruber (@stevegrubershow) January 29, 2024
Fox News reports:
Gallagher and McMorris Rodgers sent a separate letter to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, asking her agency’s Bureau of Industry and Security to investigate the four unnamed software service providers. They specifically asked the agency to consider placing the companies on a list of entities subject to significant U.S. trade restrictions.
“To summarize, a cursory review of publicly available information uncovered the above mentioned companies’ direct ties to the [People’s Liberation Army], the CCP, China’s Ministry of Public Security, the ongoing genocide of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, and the North Korean government,” they wrote to Raimondo.
And, in a third letter, the Republicans asked Ford President and CEO James Farley to make a relevant company official available for an interview with their committees.
“We’ve been helping the committees understand this Ford wholly owned and operated project,” a Ford spokesperson told Fox News Digital. “Ford has always been and remains fully committed to following all government regulations across our business.”
“Beyond legal requirements, Ford suppliers are required to meet our high standards and codes of conducts, including those to protect human rights, and are obligated to extend those requirements to suppliers with whom they might work,” the spokesperson said. “We welcome any information from any source concerning the integrity of our supply chains and partners.”
GOP reps want feds to probe Chinese firms over Ford Michigan battery plant https://t.co/yj0rZoIbEu
— The Detroit News (@detroitnews) January 29, 2024
In September, the two lawmakers demanded documents from Ford tied to its CATL partnership and threatened to call CEO Jim Farley to testify before Congress.
Republicans have been probing Ford’s battery plant plan for months over concerns it could facilitate the flow of U.S. tax subsidies to China and leave Ford dependent on Chinese technology. Ford says the battery plant is “wholly owned and operated” by the automaker.
The lawmakers said a Ford-CATL agreement puts a Beijing-based company in charge of preparing “the concept design” for the Michigan battery plant. The committee said the same Chinese company is providing engineering design services to China’s military.
The lawmakers separately wrote the Treasury and State Departments asking them to investigate possible sanctions evasion activity by one of the Chinese companies that they said will be providing IT tools for the Michigan battery plant that has ties to North Korea.Advertisement