"Indeed, warnings about China’s alleged desire to gobble up the world’s genetic data and use it for nefarious purposes have been ongoing for some time. It’s true that China has an extensive domestic DNA collection program, having launched an initiative to create a national genetics database in 2017. Concerns exist that this data will be used to control trends in medicine and pharmaceuticals, or to engineer bioweapons."
"The genomics firm at the center of the most recent drama, BGI, is one of the biggest in the world. The company, which specializes in genome sequencing, substantially increased its operations when covid-19 struck last year. As the virus got underway in the U.S., an affiliate of the company began “approaching city, county and state officials with offers to sell supplies and help set up entire labs, proposing to export a rapid testing model that they said had helped contain China’s outbreak,” the Washington Post reports. BGI has denied that it wants to collect American DNA via covid tests."