ZTE cleared to resume USA operations

"We strongly oppose the June 2018 deal with ZTE negotiated by the Commerce Department's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) to lift the seven-year ban against the export of United States parts and components to ZTE", the senators wrote.

Republican and Democratic senators said on Thursday they want the government to reinstate penalties on China's ZTE, despite a Trump administration agreement paving the way for an end of a ban on the telecommunications company. But the company is said to be facing at least $3 billion in total losses from a months-long moratorium that choked off the chips and other components needed to make its networking gear and smartphones. Its Shenzhen-listed stock rose by its 10-percent daily limit. "Assuming ZTE will be able to get back into business next week, we believe the market will start focusing on its earnings prospects".

ZTE has paid the $1 billion fine to the Treasury Department.

"Once the ZTE has completed the $400 million escrow deposit, BIS will issue a notice lifting the denial order", the US Department of Commerce said on Twitter, referring to the Bureau of Industry and Security. "The ZTE settlement represents the toughest penalty and strictest compliance regime the Department has ever imposed in such a case".

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The company had initially paid a $1.1bn (£800m) fine and was allowed to continue buying components from United States firms, but the commerce department chose to impose further restrictions on ZTE in April after claiming it had not disciplined the workers who sold the equipment on to customers in the sanctioned countries, as it had agreed. ZTE had said the ban threatened its survival.

President Trump welcomes Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., April 6, 2017. Later that month, his administration announced it would allow the company to stay in business after paying a $1.3 billion fine, changing its management and providing "high-level security guarantees".

The escrow agreement is part of a US$1.4 billion settlement ZTE reached with the Commerce Department last month to regain access to USA suppliers, whose components it relies on for its smartphones and networking gear.

ZTE, which employs around 80,000 people, effectively suspended its business following the ban, with some estimates saying as much as 30 per cent of its components were sourced from America.

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