President Trump tweets about helping ZTE “get back into business, fast”

Amidst trade and cybersecurity tensions between the United States and China, it appears that leader-to-leader talks will help China’s ZTE, a tech manufacturer that shut down most of its operations last week because the US Commerce Department effectively placed an exports ban against it.

In a tweet this morning, President Donald Trump said that he is “working together” with President Xi Jinping to give ZTE access back to products made in the United States.

The department issued its Denial Order on April 15 after it accused ZTE of breaking terms of a settlement reached over the company’s breaching of trade sanctions. It had also been assessed a $900 million fine with an option for an extra $300 million.

CNET reports from a source that ZTE spent $2.34 billion with more than 200 US businesses for components for its smartphones and networking equipment — it had spent at least $100 million on Qualcomm, Broadcom, Intel, Xilinx, SanDisk and Acacia Communications each.

With very little supply coming in to be processed, ZTE’s employees have been reporting to work for the past several days with little to do — it was last tracked in 2017 to employ 74,733 people. The company said that it had large cash reserves to survive on, but that its business couldn’t continue in its current state. Smartphone sales were suspended from its first-party sites and then by Australian carrier Telstra.

No word from the Commerce Department yet as to what it has been ordered to do.

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About The Author
Jules Wang
Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.