The popular Chinese clothing giant SHEIN is facing accusations of alleged forced labour practices after a group of US lawmakers penned a letter to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to probe the clothing brand ahead of its possible IPO.
The letter which was signed by 24 Bipartisan lawmakers argued that there have been credible accusations towards the clothing brand, that it has been utilizing cotton from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) to make its clothing in 2022.
The company was also accused of falsifying evidence in audits carried out at its facilities.
“SHEIN is aggressively raising capital and plans to execute an IPO before the end of this calendar year. Given the company’s business model and credible allegations of utilizing underpaid and forced labor, which would be in violation of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act. (P.L.117-78), we request that you set forth regulations and mandate SHEIN to certify via independent verification that the company does not use Uyghur forced labor as a condition of being registered,” the letter stated.
The group further argued that foreign countries wishing to obtain trade securities must uphold a demonstrated commitment to human rights across the globe.
The clothing brand has since dismissed the recent allegations and argued that it has a zero-tolerance policy for forced labour.
The global fashion brand is one of the world’s largest fashion retailers and was founded in Nanjing, China in 2008 by entrepreneur Chris Xu.