Reiterating previous comments, Trump tweeted on Friday afternoon that it "let [ZTE] reopen", signaling that US has reached a deal with the Chinese telecom giant.
As with a similar announcement earlier in the week, the proposed deal ran into immediate resistance in Congress, where Democrats and Trump's fellow Republicans accused him of bending to pressure from Beijing to ease up on a company that allegedly poses a significant risk to USA national security.
ZTE ran into trouble in 2016 for violating US laws restricting the sale of American technology to Iran.
Sources familiar with the communications with Congress said the deal would require ZTE to pay a hefty fine, place American compliance officers at the firm and make changes to its management.
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It's the latest twist in a saga of geopolitics and high technology that has its roots in ZTE's violations of USA sanctions against Iran back in 2010. Finally, ZTE must move its management team around. Additionally, a bipartisan group of senators has warned the administration not to "compromise lawful US enforcement actions against serial and pre-meditated violators of USA law, such as ZTE.". "We are making sure ZTE is held accountable for violating USA sanctions, pays a big price, and that we are protecting our security infrastructure and U.S.jobs". An agreement in 2017 called for the company to pay as much as $1.2 billion and penalize the workers involved, in what was the largest criminal fine for the Justice Department in an export control or sanctions case. The proposal goes against Congress, the majority of which believes that the Trump administration should not give into the pressure of easing up on ZTE since the company broke sanctions against North Korea and Iran.
The company has lost over $3 billion since the April 15th ban on doing business with US suppliers, according to a source familiar with the matter. "It is a great deal ... for #ZTE & China", Senator Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, tweeted on Friday. "#China crushes USA companies with no mercy & they use these telecomm companies to spy & steal from us".
A new report from Reuters says that ZTE and the United States government have reached a deal to get ZTE back in business in the United States, according to a senior congressional aide.
ZTE, China's second largest telecom company after Huawei, is now on life support. -China trade war and increased tension between the two powers, the ZTE ban is also a bargaining chip for the Trump administration's disputes with China.
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Ross plans to visit Beijing on June 2-4, and China has made saving ZTE one of its priorities.
ZTE needs US components for its mobile phones and network equipment. U.S. companies provide up to 30 percent of components used in ZTE's equipment.
Shares of ZTE's US suppliers traded higher on Friday. By some estimates, ZTE uses components from American suppliers in up to 90 percent of its products.
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I was very happy that he could sign, and proud [for him] because later Michael Owen came, Jonathan Woodgate came. But in the end, the manager [Vicente del Bosque] decided to choose another team and I had to respect that.