China asks USA to amend ZTE business ban

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The United States Department of Commerce recently banned China-based smartphone manufacturer ZTE from sourcing components from us -based suppliers.

Citing two sources with knowledge of the matter, Reuters reports that China has asked the United States to amend the seven-year ban that prevents US companies from doing business with ZTE. It has also underscored China's heavy reliance on semiconductor imports amid growing trade tensions with the United States.

ZTE is not officially part of the dispute over intellectual property that's fueling the US-China trade clash, but it "represents the same nexus of tech and national security issues", Eurasia Group director Evan Medeiros wrote in a research note last week.

The appeal came during trade talks in Beijing this week between senior officials from both countries aimed at heading off a trade war.

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However, this decision threatens the survival of the Chinese company, which depends heavily on American technologies (CPUs and Android OS, for example) for building their ZTE smartphones.

The Chinese firm didn't give details of its request or say when it had been made, but it did say that it provided additional material at the BIS' request.

United States concerns over Chinese tech and national security are a recurring problem for ZTE and Huawei, another huge Chinese company that makes smartphones and telecommunications equipment.

ZTE Corp, the Chinese telecom equipment and smartphone maker, said on Sunday that it submitted an application to the US Commerce Department for suspension of a business ban on the company. In the meantime, the listing of ZTE shares on the Hong Kong and Shenzhen stock exchanges has been suspended since the United States decision.

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