China warns foreign tech firms after Huawei ban

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China has reportedly summoned global technology companies for talks to warn they could face dire consequences if they co-operate with the Trump administration’s ban on sales of key American technology to Chinese companies.

Citing people familiar with the matter, The New York Times reports the companies summoned include Microsoft, Dell and Samsung.

Last month, the Chinese government said it was putting together an “unreliable entities list” of foreign companies and people.

China’s ministry of commerce said the list would contain foreign companies, individuals and organisations that “do not follow market rules, violate the spirit of contracts, blockade and stop supplying Chinese companies for non-commercial reasons, and seriously damage the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies”.

This after the Trump administration added Huawei to a trade blacklist, enacting restrictions that will make it very difficult for the company to do business with US companies.

According to Reuters, a person at US software giant Microsoft said the company’s session with Chinese officials was not a direct warning but it was made clear to the firm that complying with US bans would likely lead to further complications for all sector participants.

It adds that Microsoft was asked not to make hasty or ill-considered moves before the situation was fully understood.

The US has for months been rallying its allies to cut Huawei out of planned 5G networks, citing “national security threats” due to the company’s close ties to the Chinese government.

Huawei has denied installing any backdoors in its networking equipment for alleged government spying.

Last month, Huawei filed a motion for summary judgement as part of the process to challenge the constitutionality of Section 889 of the 2019 National Defence Authorisation.

It called on the US government to halt its state-sanctioned campaign against Huawei because it will not deliver cyber security.

Huawei is the second biggest smartphone maker in the world behind Samsung. It recently overtook Apple, which is now number three in the smartphone market. Huawei is the world’s biggest telecommunications equipment-maker, leading in technologies like 5G.

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