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America's largest defense contractors have extensive ties to the Chinese government and military
Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

America's largest defense contractors have extensive ties to the Chinese government and military

Several of the largest defense contractors in the U.S. have extensive ties to the government of China and the Communist Chinese Party.

Raytheon, Bell Flight, and Boeing — three of the nation’s most prolific defense contractors — continue to maintain close relationships with firms that conduct business with the Chinese government. Fox News reported that Lockheed Martin has business interests in China.

Issac Stone Fish, the CEO and founder of Strategy Risks, a China risk consultancy company, warned that these defense contractors’ relationships with the Chinese government present severe risks for the U.S.

Fish said, “Doing a relatively significant amount of business in China changes the risk profile now more than ever for any U.S. company, whether for compliance, cyber, reputation, security or other risks.”

“Those risks are particularly critical for companies that safeguard U.S. national defense and security," he continued. "U.S. defense contractors need to better understand their risk exposure to China and the Chinese Communist Party, so they can reduce their China risks to better serve the needs of the U.S. military and national security."

Two of Raytheon’s subsidiary companies, Pratt & Whitney (P&W) and Collins Aerospace Systems, have ties to the Chinese military, the People’s Liberation Army.

P&W is a prominent player in the Chinese market and maintains offices in Shanghai and Beijing. P&W also reportedly powers two-fifths of China’s civilian helicopters with its engine technology. The company also manufactures engines for the Chinese state-owned Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, which is intimately tied to the People’s Liberation Army.

P&W also has joint ventures with Chinese companies including China Aviation Industry Corporation (AVIC) and Xi’an Aircraft.

AVIC is a conglomerate owned by the Chinese government and is tied to the People’s Liberation Army. It was previously placed on the Treasury Department’s Non-SDN Chinese Military-Industrial Complex Companies List and the Commerce Department’s Entity List.

Collins Aerospace Systems, Raytheon’s other subsidiary in China, has more than 15 locations and nine joint ventures in the Chinese mainland.

The company’s website said, “For close to 40 years, Collins Aerospace has been demonstrating our commitment to China. Our growing presence in China has been made possible by our company’s significant investments in the country as well as strong corporate and personal relationships that have been formed over the last three decades.”

Bell Trexton, another contractor that produces military-grade aircraft, has a whole page on its website dedicated to its “China Service Center.”

Bell’s website says, “Zhenjiang Bell Textron Aviation Services Center offers comprehensive maintenance, repair and overhaul services to our customers in the Greater China region, including Macao, Hong Kong, and Mongolia. Our in-country product and customer support engineers will ensure your aircraft is ready and operational at all times.”

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