US ex­tends ZTE re­prieve on ex­port sanc­tions

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSS AMERICAS - By REUTERS

The US govern­ment has ex­tended through to Aug 30 a re­prieve of tough ex­port re­stric­tions im­posed on the Chi­nese smart­phone maker ZTE in March for al­legedly break­ing sanc­tions against Iran, the Com­merce De­part­ment said on Mon­day.

The re­newed Com­merce De­part­ment li­cense al­lows ZTE to con­tinue ex­port­ing equip­ment con­tain­ing US tech­nol­ogy. The agency said in March that its first re­prieve could be ex­tended if the com­pany co­op­er­ated with the govern­ment.

Ex­perts said US ex­port re­stric­tions were some of the tough­est ever ap­plied and would have caused dis­rup­tion across ZTE’s sprawl­ing global sup­ply chain.

The re­stric­tions would have banned US com­pa­nies from ex­port­ing to ZTE any tech­nol­ogy, soft­ware or equip­ment such as chips and pro­ces­sors made in the United States. The de­ci­sion would also have pre­vented soft­ware mak­ers from sell­ing typ­i­cal of­fice ap­pli­ca­tions like Microsoft Win­dows — or even pro­vid­ing up­dates.

But soon af­ter im­pos­ing the re­stric­tions in March, the agency of­fered the com­pany a three-month re­lief from the re­stric­tions, which was set to ex­pire June 30. The Com­merce De­part­ment an­nounced the ex­ten­sion in a no­tice posted Mon­day.

In an emailed state­ment, ZTE Chair­man Zhao Xian­ming said the ex­ten­sion shows that the com­pany is im­prov­ing its com­pli­ance and co­op­er­at­ing with the US govern­ment’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion. The re­prieve will al­low ZTE to main­tain its “re­la­tion­ships with hun­dreds of Amer­i­can com­pa­nies and our con­tin­ued in­vest­ment in the US,” he said.

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