In a significant development, the United States has imposed sanctions on three Chinese companies for their alleged involvement in supplying missile components to Pakistan. These sanctions were issued under Executive Order 13382, which focuses on entities involved in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems.
The three Chinese companies subjected to sanctions are as follows:
General Technology Limited: This company is said to have supplied brazing materials used in joining components for ballistic missile rocket engines and the production of combustion chambers.
- Beijing Luo Luo Technology Development: This entity is alleged to have provided mandrels and other machinery used in the production of solid-propellant rocket motors.
Changzhou Utek Composite Company: Since 2019, this company has been accused of supplying materials such as D-glass fiber, quartz fabric, and high silica cloth, all of which have applications in missile systems.
Sanctions Aligned with Nonproliferation Objectives
The US State Department has stated that these sanctions are part of the global nonproliferation regime and are intended to counter the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, their means of delivery, and associated procurement activities of concern. The US government remains committed to disrupting procurement networks that support activities related to proliferation.
China’s Role in Pakistan’s Military Modernization
China has been a key supplier of arms and defense equipment to Pakistan, contributing to Islamabad’s military modernization efforts. These sanctions signal the US’s intent to address the proliferation of missile technology and maintain a strong stance on nonproliferation.
Pakistan’s Missile Program
The sanctions come shortly after Pakistan conducted a test launch of its Ababeel ballistic missile system. This test aimed to validate various design and technical parameters, evaluating the performance of different sub-systems. The missile system is positioned to enhance deterrence and strategic stability in the region as part of Pakistan’s “Full Spectrum Deterrence” strategy.
In 2021, Pakistan successfully tested the Fatah-1 Guided Multi-Launch Rocket System with a range of 140 km, highlighting the country’s ongoing efforts to bolster its missile capabilities.