Global Times recently reported that the U.S. Department of Commerce sanctioned ZTE, a major Chinese multinational telecommunications equipment and systems company. ZTE’s U.S. suppliers are not allowed to export to ZTE. The sanction was based on ZTE’s violation of the U.S. export control policies against Iran. According to U.S. Department of Commerce investigations, ZTE signed multi-million-dollar contracts with Iran reselling well-known U.S. products from Microsoft, IBM, HP, Oracle and Dell. The U.S. vendors claimed that they were not aware of these deals that violated the U.S. ban on exporting to Iran. ZTE announced four years ago that it would “limit” its relationship with Iran. According to recent media reports, the U.S. Department of Commerce obtained ZTE internal top secret documents which proposed a “break-through” plan and recommendations from ZTE’s legal department on setting up “shell companies” with no ZTE branding to conduct business with Iran. The ZTE Chairman commented that the U.S. investigation was “unfair.” Some Chinese analysts expressed the belief that ZTE is just another victim of the political games among countries.
Source: Global Times, March 7, 2016