Sources say that Chinese tech manufacturer ZTE has agreed with the Commerce Department on new punishments in order to remove a US imports ban. It had signed a preliminary draft of the disciplinary revision over the weekend.
The Trump administration initially suggested that the company come under extra compliance monitoring to make sure it is using American products in assembly, change their executive and managerial leadership within 30 days and pay a $1.3 billion fine. The number has since been increased to $1.7 billion.
The 7-year imports ban was brought on after ZTE admitted it had failed to follow terms of a settlement it reached with the Commerce Department over charges of trade sanction infractions on business with Iranian and North Korean firms. The company ceased most operations since the ban took effect in April, barring it from sourcing products from American suppliers — it’s estimated that up to 30 percent of ZTE’s parts mix came from the United States.
The Commerce Department said that “no definitive agreement” was signed while ZTE could not be immediately reached.