In a major move, the United States on Friday sanctioned three Chinese companies for providing Pakistan with ballistic missile technology and components.
In the designation, the US State Department said the sanctions were being imposed as part of the global nonproliferation regime.
"Today, we are designating three entities pursuant to Executive Order (EO) 13382, which targets proliferators of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery," a statement from the US State Department read.
The US said that the three entities are based in China and worked to supply Pakistan with missile‐applicable items.
The companies which have been sanctioned include General Technology Limited, Beijing Luo Luo Technology Development Co Ltd., and Changzhou Utek Composite Company Ltd.
These companies were accused of "having engaged, or attempted to engage, in activities or transactions that have materially contributed to, or pose a risk of materially contributing to, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or their means of delivery (including missiles capable of delivering such weapons), including any efforts to manufacture, acquire, possess, develop, transport, transfer or use such items, by Pakistan."
General Technology Limited was accused of working to supply brazing materials, which are used to join components in ballistic missile rocket engines and in the production of combustion chambers.
Beijing Luo Luo Technology Development Co Ltd. was accused of supplying mandrels and other machinery, which can be used in the production of solid‐propellant rocket motors and can be controlled by the missile technology control regime.
The Changzhou Utek Composite Company Ltd. was sanctioned for supplying D‐glass glass fibre, quartz fabric, and high silica cloth - which are used in missile systems - to Pakistan since 2019.
The US reiterated its resolve to act against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, their means of delivery, and associated procurement activities of concern wherever they occur.
"The United States is committed to strengthening the global nonproliferation regime by taking action to disrupt procurement networks supporting proliferation activities of concern."
The sanction comes days after the military had conducted the launch of the Ababeel ballistic missile system.
The surface-to-surface ballistic missile system was first introduced in 2017. The first iteration of the missile had a range of 2,200 kilometres (1,367 miles) and could carry multiple warheads with multiple independent re-entry vehicles (MIRVs).
When compared, the American Cold War intercontinental ballistic missile Minuteman had an operational range of 4,300 miles.