U.S. won't cave in to Huawei, Wilbur Ross says

Logo of Huawei is seen at Viva Tech fair in Paris

A Government row with the United States over Huawei was reignited last night after a Cabinet minister said the UK would not be swayed by Donald Trump's decision to effectively ban the Chinese firm.

"Restricting Huawei from doing business in the USA will not make the U.S. more secure or stronger; instead, this will only serve to limit the United States to inferior yet more expensive alternatives".

Worldwide technology companies are anxious about the effects of these moves on the technology industry. "China will take necessary measures to safeguard Chinese business' legitimate rights and interests". China has asked its businesses to comply with laws and regulations in export control, abide by local laws and fulfil their worldwide obligations while operating in foreign countries, foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said.

"I think launching now a technological war or a trade war vis-a-vis any other country is not appropriate", French President Emmanuel Macron warned Thursday.

Some observers say the actions of the Trump administration will likely worsen the already tense situation. The restriction is "a grave escalation with China that at minimum plunges the prospect of continued trade negotiations into doubt", said Eurasia Group analysts in a report.

Shenzhen, once a sleepy fishing village, transformed into the beating heart of China's industrial miracle and Huawei plugged into its fast-expanding manufacturing sector.

At the same time, the US Commerce Department announced an effective ban on US companies selling or transferring US technology to Huawei. He served as assistant secretary of commerce for export administration during the presidency of Barack Obama.

The order includes non-U.S. Huawei affiliates in Canada, Japan, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Singapore. He added that if Huawei and its business partners cannot get the computer software or equipment they need, their operations could collapse.

The president's executive order does not identify a country or company by name.

USA justice and intelligence officials say China's economic espionage and the stealing of trade secrets happen all the time.

The US government has placed telecom equipment giant Huawei on a blacklist. However, Beijing and Huawei have both denied that such a directive exists. It has never before been used in a way that restricts an entire industry.

It has routinely been used to freeze the assets of designated terrorists and drug traffickers, and impose embargoes on hostile former governments.

Huawei, the world's largest telecommunications equipment maker, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Ross said its technology poses a risk to the development of 5G.

"The isolationist approach they recommend may support an America-first trade agenda but it's hard to see how it's in UK's national interest", Huawei said, adding it was an independent company which took no instructions from Beijing. Ltd. said it will pursue "remedies immediately and find a resolution" in face the threats of a business ban in the United States.

Sir Richard Dearlove said such a move could give the Chinese government a "potentially advantageous exploitative position" in the UK's telecoms network.

Taken together, the two moves threaten Huawei's ability to continue to sell many products because of its reliance on American suppliers.

"But we are against other countries' unilateral sanctions based on domestic law and practices that abuse export control measures", he said, adding, "We urge the USA to stop such practices and create favourable conditions for business cooperation".

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer met with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland in Washington on Wednesday to discuss the tariffs and other issues related to the U.S. -Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA), which replaced NAFTA.

Huawei says it supplies 45 of the world's top 50 telephone companies.

Its equipment is the backbone for telecom networks that carry much of the planet's data and communications traffic.

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