The global pandemic, which is believed to have originated in China and has so far killed 585,000 people and infected more than 13.6million throughout the world, has prompted several counties, including the UK and US, to rethink its relationship with China. On Tuesday, the Government announced it is banning Chinese technology giant Huawei from having a role in building the UK’s 5G mobile network amid increasing concerns over national security – something which Beijing has furiously denied. UK telecoms networks are now not allowed to buy new Huawei 5G kit from December 31, with all such equipment being removed by 2027.
China’s ambassador to the UK Liu Xiaoming warned the decision could have an impact on the future trading relationship between the UK and China.
The UK Government has a range of powers at its disposal, and now Express.co.uk readers have lost patience with China and are demanding some of those powers are enforced.
The latest poll on this website, which ran from 3pm until 10 pm on Wednesday July 15, asked: “Should Britain place sanctions on China?”
A huge 91 percent (4,481 readers) agreed the UK should now impose strict sanctions on Beijing as tensions between the two countries deteriorate.
China should have sanctions placed on it by Britain, express.co.uk readers have said in the poll
Just eight percent (393 readers) disagreed, while one percent (77 readers) were undecided.
Express.co.uk readers have vented their fury at China, and have demanded Britain and the rest of the western world take immediate and forceful action.
One reader said: “We should definitely impose sanctions.
“The whole world should stop trading with China and start trading with friendly countries.
“China is threat to the Western world.”
A second reader said Britain should follow the lead of the US and Donald Trump in sanctioning China overt trade.
They wrote: How can you do business with a hostile country that pretends to be your friend? You don’t.
“Sanctioning China is probably the only Trump policy I agree with.
“Even if the US were not taking this route, it would still be the right choice for the UK.”
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Another Express.co.uk reader simply said: “The whole world should boycott Chinese products until they adopt democracy.”
A fourth person added: “No dithering. Get the sanctions in place immediately.”
Boris Johnson and his Government have a range of powers at their disposal and can use sanctions for a range of purposes.
These include supporting foreign policy and national security objectives, as well as maintaining international peace and security.
The Foreign Office is primarily charged with UK policy on international sanctions, with the main measures covering economic, trade and travel restrictions.
The Department for International Trade can impose trade sanctions on goods in and going out of the UK.
The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation, part of the Treasury, has responsibility for ensuring financial rules are being implemented, and sanctions can include the freezing of certain assets.
Meanwhile, the Home Office and the Department of Transport has the power to ban entry into the UK, while travel restrictions have already been imposed on China after it was excluded from the 14-day coronavirus quarantine exemption list.