Over the past decade, and particularly under General Secretary Xi Jinping’s tenure, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has asserted greater control over China’s state-backed propaganda outlets while trying to disguise them as independent news agencies. General Secretary Xi himself has stated, “Party-owned media must. . . embody the party’s will, safeguard the party’s authority … their actions must be highly consistent with the party.” While free media around the world are beholden to the truth, PRC media are beholden to the CCP. Today, the United States is publicly recognizing that reality through these designations.
Pursuant to authorities under the Foreign Missions Act, the State Department is issuing today a new determination that designates the U.S. operations of Yicai Global, Jiefang Daily, Xinmin Evening News, Social Sciences in China Press, Beijing Review, and Economic Daily as foreign missions. These six entities all meet the definition of a foreign mission under the Foreign Missions Act in that they are “substantially owned or effectively controlled” by a foreign government. In this case, they are effectively controlled by the government of the People’s Republic of China.
The decision to designate these entities does not place any restrictions on what these organizations may publish in the United States. It simply recognizes them for what they are – PRC-controlled propaganda outlets. This action follows the February 18 designation of Xinhua News Agency, China Global Television Network, China Radio International, China Daily Distribution Corporation, and Hai Tian Development USA and the June 22 designation of China Central Television, China News Service, the People’s Daily, and the Global Times.
Entities designated as foreign missions must adhere to certain requirements that increase transparency relating to their associated government’s media activities in the United States. Our goal is to protect the freedom of press in the United States, and ensure the American people know whether their news is coming from the free press or from a malign foreign government. Transparency isn’t threatening to those who value truth.