President Donald Trump in May urged his Commerce Department to come up with another way to punish ZTE, which was found to be illegally selling to Iran and North Korea. | Pablo Martinez Monsivais

.cms-textAlign-lefttext-align:left;.cms-textAlign-centertext-align:center;.cms-textAlign-righttext-align:right;.cms-magazineStyles-smallCapsfont-variant:small-caps;.cms-playbookStyle-rubriccolor:#b70000;font-weight:bold;font-family:sans-serif;

Chinese telecom giant ZTE is no longer subject as of Friday to the Trump administration’s April denial order banning it from U.S. operations for seven years.

The department lifted the ban on ZTE today after the company put $400 million in escrow, to be drawn by the U.S. if it violates a June agreement with Commerce.

Story Continued Below

"While we lifted the ban on ZTE, the Department will remain vigilant as we closely monitor ZTE’s actions to ensure compliance with all U.S. laws and regulations,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement.

ZTE had said the April denial order would put it out of business. President Donald Trump in May urged his Commerce Department to come up with another way to punish ZTE, which was found to be illegally selling to Iran and North Korea. That alternative approach included a $1 billion fine, a management shake-up and an embedded compliance team to ensure it abides by the agreement.

Several lawmakers see deeper problems with ZTE and cite it as a national security threat due to possible ties with the Chinese government.

The Senate included a provision to restore the sanctions in a must-pass defense bill, H.R. 5515 (115), passed in June. Lawmakers are now negotiating to determine whether the language remains in a version of the bill reconciled with the House.

“Don’t bother cashing the check, @realDonaldTrump,” Sen. Richard Blumenthal tweeted on Thursday. “Congress must and will act to hold ZTE accountable for its threat to national security and flagrant violation of U.S. law.”

Let’s block ads! (Why?)


Source link