ZTE Blasts 'Unfair' US Ban, Vows to Fight


US authorities this week banned American companies from sales to ZTE for seven years, saying the Chinese telecom company had broken a settlement agreement with repeated false statements, a move that threatened to cut off ZTE's supply chain.

During 2017, ZTE admitted that it had illegally shipped telecom equipment to North Korea and Iran and agreed to penalties in the amount of $1.19 billion.

ZTE has described a U.S. sales ban on its products as "unacceptable" and pledges to take legal steps, if necessary, to protect the company's interests as well as that of its stakeholders and customers.

Some of the U.S companies which could be affected by this decision are Qualcomm, Google and Dolby.

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According to the United States, this was in violation of a settlement in March 2017 that encompassed ZTE's agreement to a seven-year suspension of export sales if it broke additional conditions, including carrying out disciplinary action against executives responsible for the equipment sale to the two countries.

The Shenzhen-based company said it is determined to take all means permitted by law to safeguard its legitimate rights and interests, while it will continue efforts to solve the issue through dialogue. "The statement also laments that ZTE has punished employees responsible for past misdeeds and that an independent investigation remains incomplete".

"The Denial Order will not only severely impact the survival and development of ZTE, but will also cause damages to all partners of ZTE including a large number of USA companies", it added.

"ZTE will not give up its efforts to solve problems through communication and dialogue".

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ZTE said it has established a compliance management committee directly under the leadership of the company's president; set up a team of global experts on compliance on export controls; hired a number of world-class consultants to provide professional guidance; and built a framework for adhering to export restrictions.

ZTE also contends that "corrective measures" were taken (though it doesn't specify what those were in its statement). Huawei, another massive tech corporation in China, is also a target of the USA federal government.

The company can keep using Android, for which Google charges no fee, but might lose access to applications such as Google Maps, Gmail and Youtube, according to according to IDC analyst Kiranjeet Kaur.

Quite what those "judicial measures" could entail, though, is not clear: The key message here appears to be that ZTE will be seeking what it regards as justice, and to redress a situation it that it regards as unfair.

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