© filipefrazao84 dreamstime.com_ General | May 16, 2019
Trade tensions mount as China reacts to blacklist
In response to a U.S. Government decision to blacklist Huawei, China said it is taking steps to protect its companies, in a further test of wills between the economic titans.
According to a Reuters report, China sharply criticized the U.S. stance on Huawei Thursday, reiterating its position against any foreign country imposing unilateral sanctions on Chinese entities, a Commerce Ministry spokesman said, stressing that the United States should avoid further damaging Sino-U.S. trade relations. On Wednesday, the U.S. Commerce Department said it was adding Huawei Technologies Co. and 70 affiliates to its so-called “Entity List” in a move that bans the Chinese company from acquiring components and technology from U.S. firms without prior U.S. government approval. In a separate action, reported on by Evertiq earlier today, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday, barring U.S. firms from using telecom equipment made by companies deemed to pose a national security risk. The order did not identify any country or company, but U.S. officials have previously labeled Huawei a “threat” and lobbied allies not to use Huawei network equipment in next-generation 5G networks. The crackdown on Huawei came as U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he would visit China soon for more trade talks. Hopes for a deal to end their trade war have been thrown into doubt after the world’s two biggest economies raised tariffs on each other’s goods in the past week. Reuters reported that Gao Feng, spokesman at the Chinese commerce ministry, told reporters, “China has emphasized many times that the concept of national security should not be abused, and that it should not be used as a tool for trade protectionism. China will take all the necessary measures to resolutely safeguard the legitimate rights of Chinese firms.” U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Trump backed the decision to “prevent American technology from being used by foreign-owned entities in ways that potentially undermine U.S. national security or foreign policy interests.” In response, Huawei, which denies its products pose a security threat, said it was “ready and willing to engage with the U.S. government and come up with effective measures to ensure product security.” Huawei also said that restricting the company from doing business in the United States would “limit the U.S. to inferior yet more expensive alternatives, leaving the U.S. lagging behind in 5G deployment and eventually harming the interests of U.S. companies and consumers.” Analysists are predicting that the sanctions on Huawei are also likely to have ramifications beyond the company itself, rattling the global tech supply chain, according to the Reuters report.