SINGAPORE, Aug 17 – The U.S. Department of Commerce is expected to extend the return of Huawei Technologies, which allows a Chinese company to buy supplies from U.S. companies to serve existing customers, two sources familiar with the situation said.
The "Provisional General License" will be extended for Huawei by 90 days, sources said.
The store initially allowed Huawei to buy some U.S. goods in May, shortly after it blacklisted the company for a move aimed at minimizing disruption for its customers, many of whom operate networks in rural America.
The expansion will renew the agreement, which is due to expire on August 19, continuing the Chinese company’s ability to maintain existing telecommunications networks and provide software updates for Huawei phones.
The licensing situation that has become a key negotiation chip for the United States in its trade talks with China remains fluid and the decision to resume Huawei's takeover could be reversed before Monday's deadline, sources said.
U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to discuss Huawei in talks this weekend, one source said.
Huawei had no immediate comment. The Chinese Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to a faxed request for comment.
When the Ministry of Commerce blocked Huawei from buying American goods earlier this year, it saw it as a major escalation in the trade war between the world's two largest economies.
The US government blacklisted Huawei claimed that the Chinese company was involved in activities contrary to national security or foreign policy interests.
As an example, the blacklisting order cited a criminal case pending against the company in federal court over allegations that Huawei violated U.S. sanctions against Iran. Huawei pleaded not guilty in the case.
The order said the indictment also accused Huawei of "deceptive and obstructive acts."
At the same time, the United States says China could use Huawei smartphones and networking equipment to spy on Americans, allegations repeatedly denied by the company.
The world's largest manufacturer of telecommunications equipment is still banned from buying US parts and parts for the production of new products without additional special licenses.
Many Huawei suppliers have requested special sales licenses for the company. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told reporters late last month that he had received more than 50 applications, and that he expected to receive more.
Of the $ 70 billion ($ 292.3 billion) Huawei spent on component purchases in 2018, about $ 11 billion went to U.S. firms, including Qualcomm, Intel, and Micron Technology.
The Commerce Department late yesterday declined to comment, referring to Ross's comments to CNBC television earlier this week, in which he said existing licenses were in effect until Monday.
Asked if he would extend them, he said, "I'll be glad to update you on Monday." – Reuters