Saturday, 17 April, 2021


ZTE lodges application with United States for suspension of business ban

Johannes Eisele—AFP Johannes Eisele—AFP
Conrad Doyle | 07 May, 2018, 12:02

ZTE has said the ban was unacceptable and that the sanction threatens its survival.

ZTE, which is spearheading the development of 5G infrastructure in China, announced Sunday that it has filed a petition with the U.S. Department of Commerce calling for a suspension of the penalty, as well as additional information.

The Chinese company, which sells smartphones and telecommunications equipment around the world, has found itself caught up in a tense US-China trade fight.

USA had imposed a seven-year ban on US companies selling components and software to ZTE last month after finding the Chinese telecoms company breached US sanctions on Iran. It has also underscored China's heavy reliance on semiconductor imports amid growing trade tensions with the United States.

The appeal came during trade talks in Beijing this week between senior officials from both countries aimed at heading off a trade war. The Chinese government said it lodged "solemn representations" with the United States over the ban.

The ban on sales to ZTE, which is heavily reliant on imports of USA chips, had threatened to scupper the Chinese firm's smartphone business. The company relies on USA firms for key smartphone components, including microchips from Qualcomm and glass from Corning.

The Commerce Department did not respond to a request for comment outside of business hours. Washington imposed the ban last month after ZTE staff weren't punished for sending United States goods to Iran in violation of U.S. sanctions.

Huawei is effectively shut out of the United States, but ZTE has made significant inroads there. In the meantime, the listing of ZTE shares on the Hong Kong and Shenzhen stock exchanges has been suspended since the USA decision.

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