House leaders lock Trump administration out of funds to save ZTE
The House Appropriations Committee has agreed to an amendment that stops funds from being used to retract the current Denial Order placed against Chinese tech manufacturer ZTE.
“The amendment would prevent the Commerce Department from renegotiation of the sanctions it just enacted last month on ZTE,” Democratic Representative Dutch Rupperberger told The Hill.
Ruppersberger drafted the amendment as a part of the 2019 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations bill.
In April, the Commerce Department had decided to impose a ban on ZTE from importing products made by American companies for 7 years as punishment for failing to abide by terms of a settlement it reached after breaking trade sanctions.
On Sunday, President Donald Trump tweeted that he would work with Chinese President Xi Jinping and instruct the Commerce Department to revise the ban – which had crippled day-to-day operations at ZTE’s factories — and save Chinese jobs. Legislators reacted negatively to the news, citing cybersecurity concerns, intellectual property theft and pointing out the Trump’s hypocrisy of prioritizing Chinese jobs over American jobs in the midst of flaunting tariffs at China and the United States’s allies.
ZTE pays hundreds of millions of dollars annually on US components for its networking equipment and smartphones.