Two months after President Donald trump lifted the ban from Huawei, more than 130 applications from companies have been sent for licenses to sell US goods to China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, three sources told Reuters.
Nevertheless, the Trump Administration is yet to grant any license for sales to commence. The rocky relationship between China and the US has ultimately led to the loss of billions in the sales of chipmakers, software companies and others in Huawei’s US supply chain. As much as the Chinese firm needs the American suppliers for microchips and licence to some of its apps for its gadgets, American firms also need the patronage from Huawei, the largest telecom provider. Tech firms in both countries depend on one other mutually.
The ban doesn’t just outrightly kick Huawei out of the market or make their product less attractive to consumers. The Chinese tech firm in 2018 purchased $11b worth of American goods. If the feud between both factions doesn’t come to a halt, American suppliers including Google, Intel and Qualcomm would be significantly affected.
As the strain in the relationship between both countries persist, William Reinsch, a former Commerce department official stresses that the members in the executive are lost as to what the President is up to. “Nobody in the executive branch knows what trump wants and they are all afraid to make a decision without knowing that,” he said.
Trump welcomed the month of August with an announcement on Twitter that he would impose a 10% tariff on the remaining goods entering into the US from China. The goods include household technology like toys, handsets consoles, computers and other items. Last week, he vowed to increase tariffs on $550b in Chinese imports, few hours after China imposed new levies on $75b in US goods.
However, he spoke softly toward China at the G7 leaders’ conference that took place over weekend. He said he thought both countries were doing greatly and would still reach a consensus to end the trade war that has left many companies rolling in the mud.
Huawei is yet to respond to any comment regarding the licenses but has called for the United States to take it off its so-called entity list and end the “unjust treatment.” The world’s second largest smartphone maker was placed in in entity list alongside other companies in May. The Trump led administration proceeded to champion a campaign that banned Huawei from doing business with American firms, including cutting it off from the contract to upgrade the country’s 5G networks. It urged its allies to do likewise.
The US government cited security as a major concern alleging that Huawei works with Beijing and could perpetrate military espionage with their equipment. Huawei has repeatedly denied this claim and maintained that it works as a business enterprise and has no ties with the Chinese government nor the military.