US companies are using loophole in trade ban to do business with Huawei
Goods not produced in the US are exemptBy Rob Thubron
In brief: Despite Huawei finding itself on an Entity List last month that prevents it from doing business with US firms, American companies including Micron and Intel are once again selling components to the Chinese giant after finding a way to circumvent the trade ban.
According to a report in the New York Times, US companies have generated millions of dollars in sales to Huawei over the last few weeks by shipping components that were manufactured outside of the United States.
In an earnings call yesterday, Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra confirmed that while it had stopped dealing with Huawei following the blacklisting, it had resumed selling certain goods to the firm over the last two weeks after it "determined that we could lawfully resume" some shipments.
A statement by John Neuffer, president of the Semiconductor Industry Association, suggests the US government has given the okay for non-US-manufactured goods to be sold to Huawei, though some reports say the Trump administration is split over whether to allow the sales.
"As we have discussed with the U.S. government, it is now clear some items may be supplied to Huawei consistent with the Entity List and applicable regulations. Each company is impacted differently based on their specific products and supply chains, and each company must evaluate how best to conduct its business and remain in compliance," he wrote.
The US placed Huawei on the Entity List after years of accusing it of spying at the behest of the Chinese government, but US companies have asked for the ban to be eased as it is harming American organizations.
Last week saw five more Chinese firms, all involved in the supercomputer industry, added to the blacklist over the machines' potential military applications.