Huawei isn’t the only enemy of the Trump administration. Even before the US trade war, there was that issue of ZTE facing a number of issues related to the mobile business. If you may remember, the Chinese OEM was once banned from sourcing parts from American sources. It was due to the company lying to the US government. It was found to be violating some policies it was supposed to follow in North Korea and Iran. To make the long story short, the brand was given a 7-year suspension of denial of export privileges.
Interestingly, ZTE was given a chance by the Trump administration. The President ordered the US Commerce Department to help ZTE. It only needed to clean up its act. A couple of years ago, it was said to cease operations of main business due to U.S sanctions.
We remember that time when Huawei and ZTE devices were banned from being marketed in US military bases. ZTE has been saved but with a price to pay. But then ZTE wasn’t out of the woods yet as the Senate blocked Trump deal.
The past few years have been crazy but the the US government gave ZTE a temporary retrieve.It is now allowed to do business with US suppliers again. We thought again ZTE may finally be truly safe but a Defense policy bill that banned Huawei and ZTE were signed by President Trump.
Earlier this year, the Justice Department started investigating bribery accusations against ZTE. We learned about Huawei and ZTE being still banned but could still do business with US firms. In July, we shared with you that Huawei and ZTE were labeled security threats by The FCC. We noted that rural carriers may suffer. Nothing much has been mentioned since then but now there is an affirmation by the US FCC.
ZTE didn’t really challenge the claim that “Chinese law imposes both legal and extralegal controls on Chinese citizens and foreign citizens, companies, and organizations operating in China to provide access, cooperation, and support for the government’s intelligence gathering activities.”
So ZTE really is a ‘national security threat’ according the FCC. This is because of the concerns of telecoms gear that could be used for spying. This decision only means that the FCC will continue to drive Huawei and ZTE away from the American market.
The issue isn’t over yet. The FCC will still hold a meeting on December 10. The group is said to be considering rules for listing prohibited gear that ZTE may have.
Huawei and ZTE aren’t the only companies being banned by the US government. The latter has plans to ban three more after banning China Mobile.