Trump Tweets on ZTE… & Gives the Chinese Vendor a Lifeline!
Here's an unlikely scenario. Donald Trump has tweeted about ZTE, the Chinese company that closed its doors last week following a ruling that banned US companies from selling technology components to the network infrastructure and handset vendor. But it's maybe not the message you would have expected. (See ZTE Ceases Business Operations After US Ban.)
Trump says he's working with President Xi Jinping of China to get ZTE back in business:
President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast. Too many jobs in China lost. Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 13, 2018
It's an extraordinary scenario, but a welcome one: ZTE, which the US authorities ruled had been dishonest during a trading probation period related to the sale of technology to Iran and North Korea, can still expect some sort of ruling against it, but not one as onerous as the current seven-year "denial order" that has effectively closed its doors. (See ZTE in Existential Crisis as It Slams 'Unfair' US Ban, Considers 'Judicial Measures' and US Govt. Bans Domestic Component Sales to ZTE.)
It's welcome because it means a major player in the global communications networking and devices market has not been suddenly wiped out because of a unilateral decision by one US state department: It also means the industry could be spared major job losses across the world at ZTE's various operations, and it could put the network strategies of operators that rely on ZTE back on track.
But here's something that Trump didn't mention, maybe because of some potential embarrassment. The denial order ban didn't just slam ZTE -- it also stuck a right hook on multiple US firms and was likely to lead to the loss of US jobs at components companies impacted by the trade ban. (See Acacia Hit Worst by ZTE Components Ban.)
Given that the Trump administration is attempting to "Make America Great Again!" (whatever that means), implementing a ruling that results in the loss of US jobs was misguided and foolish. Now, at least, it seems like some sense might prevail. And not a moment too soon.
— Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading