A U.S. Congressional Committee on China issued a letter Tuesday urging NBA players to end their endorsements of sportswear companies that use materials manufactured in Chinese slave labor camps.
In a letter to the NBA, the chairs of the bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China pointed out that more than a dozen pro basketball players have inked deals with companies such as China-based ANTA, Li-Ning, and Peak, to sponsor shoes, jerseys, and other types of sportswear. Many of these products are manufactured using cotton from China’s Xinjiang Province, an area notorious for massive camps where inmates serve as forced laborers to make the products and farm the cotton.
“Players have continued to sign new deals with Anta Sports,” said the letter from Senator Jeff Merkley (D, OR) and Representative Jim McGovern (D, MA), Reuters reports.
“We believe that commercial relationships with companies that source cotton in Xinjiang create reputational