The Federal Communications Commission or FCC has officially declared that Huawei and ZTE are a threat to US national security. According to the official statement, both telecommunication giants from China pose a security threat to the integrity of US communications networks and the communications supply chain.
This means that the telcos are not allowed to use the FCC’s USD 8.3 billion Universal Service Fund to buy or maintain equipments that are provided by Huawei or ZTE. According to Commissioner Brendan Carr, both companies are linked to “Communist China” and intend to engage in large scale industrial espionage.
The designation is the latest step that FCC is taking to protect America’s communications networks from the threats posed by China, the press release states. Previous efforts included launching a proceeding aimed at removing Huawei and ZTE gear from the US communications networks. Carr said, “We cannot treat Huawei and ZTE as anything less than a threat to our collective security.”
This also means that many small carriers will have to shut down parts of their network as they can’t use the subsidiary money provided by the FCC to maintain parts brought from Huawei and ZTE.
The trade relationship between the US and China was already in a bad position. COIVID-19 pandemic made that worse. Now this decision from FCC to stop China’s biggest equipment manufacturer to sell in the US may see retaliation from China is needless to say.