The Chinese government responsed to US President Joe Biden’s allegations that Chinese intelligent vehicles may be a threat to national security, Kallanish reports.

On Friday, China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning told a press conference: “We urge the US to respect the laws of the market economy and the principles of fair competition, stop generalising the concept of national security, stop discriminating and suppressing Chinese companies, and effectively maintain an open, fair, and non-discriminatory business environment.”

She says that the popularity of Chinese cars around the world is not due to so-called unfair practices but to technological innovation and excellent quality formed in fierce market competition. “China has always opened its door to global auto companies, and US auto companies have been fully enjoying the benefits of China’s large market. On the contrary, the US has engaged in trade protectionism and set up discriminatory subsidy policies and other obstacles, which have seriously hindered Chinese cars from entering the US market,” the spokeswoman adds.

A day earlier, the White House issued a statement from Biden announcing the US Secretary of Commerce had been tasked with investigating connected vehicles with technologies from “countries of concern” and responding to risks to the US auto industry.  

According to Biden, China is determined to dominate the future of the auto market, including by using “unfair practices.” As a result of its policies, China “could flood our market with its vehicles, posing risks to our national security,” while imposing restrictions on American autos and other foreign autos operating in China, he claims.

The US President suggests that connected vehicles from China could cause national security risks as they could collect sensitive data on US citizens and infrastructure, and send it back to China. “These vehicles could be remotely accessed or disabled,” he warns.

Chinese carmakers may face further challenges in North America, as speculation suggests the US government is moving to take action to ban imports of cheaper Chinese EVs from Mexico.